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Full text of "The City Hall, Boston : cornerstone laid, Monday, December 22, 1862, dedicated, Monday, September 17, 1865"

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The City Hall, recently completed, is at once the most elaborate 
and conspicuous, as well as the most important, of the municipal 
structures of Boston. In its external outline and details, and in 
its interior arrangements, it presents a striking addition to the 
public edifices of the City, and one which certainly goes far to 
do away with the reproach implied in the remark that our people 
seemed to be careless or indifferent to the graces of correct and 
stately architectural effect. The interest with which it has been 
visited since its completion, by large numbers of persons, and 
the general commendation which it has called forth, both for its 
appearance and the accommodations it affords, give sufficient 
.evidence that any such advance in architectural taste will always 
be appreciated at its full value in this community. 

It has been the custom of former city governments, on occasion 
of the completion of other public buildings of note, — such as the 
New Jail, the Public Library, the Alms House at Deer Island 
and the City Hospital, — to preserve, in pamphlet or book form, 
a permanent record of the history and progress of the under- 
taking. The present publication, therefore, is but the continua- 
tion of a scries, not only interesting to our own citizens, but 
of value as a precedent elsewhere. The buildings, described 


and illustrated in this series, are, all of them, such as embody 
the best experience and the most careful study of their 
widely different requirements. They are spacious, conven- 
ient and substantial structures, entirely adapted to their re- 
spective purposes, and carefully arranged for the most thorough, 
as well as for the most economical, administration of the insti- 
tutions for which they were respectively erected. And it is not 
too much to say that all of them are distinguished, in a greater 
or less degree, by such marked features of architectural merit, in 
detail, as the wants of the present time would seem to demand 
iu the principal municipal structures of a wealthy and flourish- 
ing city. 

In all these respects of adaptation, it is believed that the build- 
ing, which forms the subject of the present volume, will be found 
to fall no whit behind its predecessors, while, as regards elegance 
and elaboration of style, it decidedly surpasses any former struc- 
ture which the City has ever been called on to erect. That this 
elevation of style should have been aimed at in this case was 
naturally to be expected, not only from the central and conspicu- 
ous position occupied, but from the fact of its being the chief 
structure for all City purposes, intended for the official and busi- 
ness transactions of the higher branches of the City administra- 
tion ; and, as such, well described by Mayor Lincoln, iu his 
remarks on occasion of the dedication, as " the crowning glory 
of our municipal architecture." 

The style in which this building has been erected is so great 
an innovation on the character of our previously existing public 


structures as to have excited considerable attention, and to have 
called forth more or less of criticism and remark. It may be 
described as the Italian Renaissance, modified and elaborated by 
the taste of the French architects of the last thirty years. On 
examination it will be found to be a style which grows naturally 
out of the character and requirements of our modern structures, 
and which enables the architect of the present day to preserve a 
high degree of artistic effect in his compositions, while at the 
same time readily adapting itself to all the wants and uses of a 
practical design. It is gratifying to observe that the taste of the 
present day, — if by this term we may describe the generally 
expressed approbation of the great majority of refined and 
educated persons, — manifests everywhere a decided tendency 
toward the Renaissance, as a style capable of supplying the 
greatest amount of convenience attainable in our modern build- 
ings, combined with the most appropriate elegance in their 
adornment. A striking proof of this tendency is to be found in 
the fact that besides being long naturalized in Frauce, and being 
the only style in which all the great works of improvement of 
modern Paris are composed, it has been so recognized and 
studied elsewhere, that in the great English competition for the 
projected new Government buildings, at Whitehall, the designs 
to which all the highest premiums (,£800 each) were awarded, 
by a commission consisting of the most accomplished judges in 
the kingdom, were without exception in this style only. It will 
doubtless ere long be fully recognized by sound architectural 
critics as the true vernacular style of our age and country. 


From the dignified and classical character of its details, it is at 
least peculiarly fitted for a great public structure, — while from 
the numerous windows it admits of, it is equally manageable for 
the various purposes required of it internally. In short, as 
remarked by Mr. Fergusson,* one of the ablest as well as the 
most critical writers oa the fine arts of our day, — it is " a style 
which, for want of a better name, is sometimes called the Italian, 
but which should be called the common sense style. This, never 
having attained the completeness which debars all further pro- 
gress — as was the case in the purely Classical or in the perfected 
Gothic styles — not only admits of, but insists on, progress. It 
courts borrowing principles and forms from either. It can use 
either pillars or pinnacles, as may be required. It admits of 
towers or spires or domes. It can cither indulge in plain 
walls or pierce them with innumerable windows. It knows 
no guide but common sense, it owns no master but true taste. 
It may hardly be possible, however, because it requires the exer- 
cise of these qualities ; and more than this, it demands thought, 
where copying has hitherto sufficed; and it counts originality 
which the present system repudiates. Its greatest merit is that 
it admits of that progress by which alone man has hitherto 
accomplished anything great or good, cither in Literature, in 
Science, or in Art." 

This volume is now presented by the Committee on Public 
Buildings as a final report of their doings. It also includes 

* History of the Modern St3'les of Architecture, p. 329. 


a history of the proceedings heretofore taken, from the first 
commencement of the undertaking to the final completion of 

the building, ready for occupancy by the various departments 
of the City Government. 

The Committee deem it only an act of simple justice — and 
they believe they speak the sentiments of their predecessors in 
so doing — to record as one of the closing acts of official duty 
their testimony to the zeal and fidelity with which the Architects 
of the building have at all times forwarded the views and 
wishes of the Committee, in preparing, under their advice, the 
almost endless details of a structure which will long remain as 
a noble monument of their professional skill. 


Committee on Public Buildings. 
City Hall, Boston, 
Dec. 30, 1865. 








At the beginning of the year 1862,* the attention of 
the City Council was formally directed to the necessity 
for a new City Hall in the Inaugural Address from 
Mayor Wightman. He said : 

" In recommending the erection of a new City Hall 
of sufficient size to accommodate all the departments of 
the government, I do so from the conviction that the 
present year will be a favorable one for this under- 
taking. The City Hospital, Public Garden, South Bay, 
and other expensive works and improvements having 
been provided for, it appears eminently proper, at this 
time, to erect an appropriate building for a City Hall, 
which has been recjuired for the public business for 
many years. 

I have ascertained that the amount now paid for rents 
for the various premises occupied for city purposes, 

* The record of the various proceedings of the City Government, pre- 
vious to the year 1SG2, on the subject of a new City Hall, will be found in 
the Report, pp. 5-27. 


exceeds the interest upon any reasonable estimate of 
the expense of such a building as would be worthy of 
our wealthy municipality. In anticipation of some 
action upon this subject, arrangements have been made 
by which temporary accommodations for the City 
Council, and some of the city officers, could be pro- 
vided in the Old State House during the erection of 
the new building, — the leases of the tenants being 
predicated upon this contingency. 

I trust, therefore, that this subject will receive the 
prompt attention from the City Council which its impor- 
tance demands." 

Soon after the organization of the new government, 
the Joint Standing Committee on Public Buildings was 
appointed, consisting of the following gentlemen : 

Aldermen — 


Councilmen — • 


So much of the Mayor's address as related to the 
erection of a new City Hall having been referred to 
this Committee, they made a report in the Common 
Council on the 19th of June, 1862, accompanied by 
plans and elevations of the present structure, drawn, 
under the direction of the Committee, by Messrs. 


Gridley J. F. Bryant and Arthur Gilman, Architects. 
The report was as follows : 


The addresses of the Mayor, at his first inauguration 
in 1861, and again on the renewal of his term of office 
in 1862, having alluded in the most marked manner to 
the strong necessity which exists for increased accom- 
modation in the City Hall building, for nearly all the 
branches of the city government. The urgency of the 
question to which the remarks of His Honor has thus 
given a renewed expression, has for the past twelve 
years at least, forced itself with constantly increasing 
weight upon the consideration of each successive city 
government, as each in their turn have gained from 
experience a knowledge of the entire inadequacy of 
the present structure to the important purposes it is 
intended, to serve. The subject has now, in fact, been 
more or less under discussion for a period of twenty- 
four years, — having been felt to be suspended only, 
and not terminated, by the alteration and repair of the 
present building in 1840. A history, therefore, of the 
various action heretofore taken on this important sub- 
ject will, it is believed, enable the members of the 
present City Council more fully to appreciate the ne- 
cessity of some speedy and decided measures for the 
proper accommodation of the present, and the immedi- 
ately prospective wants of our populous and growing 

There appears to have been a singular and almost 
unbroken unanimity of feeling and conviction upon 


this subject on the part of all the successive Boards of 
the city government since the year 1838, when the 
necessity of seeking more spacious and convenient 
quarters than those afforded in the Old State House 
building forced itself upon the minds of our prede- 
cessors of that day. On the 28th day of May, 1838, 
an order was passed empowering the then Committee 
on Public Buildings to report a plan for a new City 
Hall, the cost of which should not exceed the sum of 
$ 100,000, and to submit the same for the consideration 
of the City Council. In compliance with these instruc- 
tions, on the 11th day of June of the same year, the 
late respected Mayor Eliot, in behalf of the commit- 
tee, submitted a plan for a new building and a report 
in accordance with the terms of the order, already 
given. This early, and in many respects most able 
report, concludes with the statement that the " situa- 
tion for the building which has been thought, on all 
accounts, the most desirable, is the same, or nearly the 
same, as that on which the old Court House now stands 
in Court Square. It will however be important, — and 
the committee esteem it even necessary, considering 
the probable growth of the city and the extension of 
the city business within a few years, — that a little 
more ground should be covered than is now occupied 
by the Court House." And as a means toward clear- 
ing away all obstacles to the securing as much room 
as possible for the purposes of the city government 
proper, this first committee on the subject voted to 
" recommend the removing of the Court of Probate and 
the Registry of Deeds into a separate building, to be 


placed on a part of the site now occupied by the build- 
ing known as the Museum," — a measure soon after hap- 
pily carried into effect. And on the same 11th day of 
June, 1838, an order passed the Board of Aldermen 
" That the committee be authorized to receive proposals 
for the erection of a City Hall, according to the plan 
presented, and to contract for its erection as soon as 
the necessary arrangements can be made." The order 
was duly sent down for concurrence, but the plan sub- 
mitted not receiving the approbation of the other 
branch in all respects, no further record of it appears 
at the time in this connection. On the 25th day of 
June, however, the committee were further instructed 
" to ascertain whether the land and buildings, situated 
in the vicinity of the old Court House, belonging to the 
estate of Asa Richardson, deceased, can be purchased, 
and if so, at what price, and also to procure and report, 
as soon as may be, additional plans, models, specifica- 
tions, and estimates of cost of said proposed new City 
Hall." So that the delay, even at this early period of 
the undertaking, appears to have arisen only from a 
disapproval of the particular plan recommended by the 
Mayor and Aldermen, and not from any indifference on 
the part of the Common Council to the need which 
existed for a new and more convenient structure. 

On the inauguration of the municipal government 
for 1839, the Mayor's Address again brought up the 
subject, upon which no definite conclusion had been 
arrived at in the previous year, in a still more urgent 
and forcible manner. That this was responded to at 
once, and in the most prompt spirit on the part of the 


city government, is shown from the fact that a com- 
mittee was appointed and the subject referred to them 
at tire very next meeting, or as early as the 14th day of 
January. This committee appear to have gone to work 
in good earnest, and to have made the best use of their 
time in coming to an intelligent understanding of their 
duties, since we find them on the 1st of April next fol- 
lowing asking authority from the city government " to 
make such purchases of land as may enable them to 
report a suitable plan." With this distinct view, then, 
of erecting a building larger than the present City 
Hall, we find this committee of 1839 fully authorized 
by a vote of the same date as their report, to make 
such purchases of land as they may think necessary 
and proper for the purpose named in their application. 
And on the 4th of June following, it was '■'■Ordered, 
that the Treasurer be, and he is hereby authorized to 
borrow, under the direction of the Committee on Fi- 
nance, the sum of sixty thousand dollars, for the pur- 
pose of making payment for the estates purchased by 
the committee on the erection of a new City Hall, in 
the vicinity of the old Court House." With the view of 
carrying out the project in the same vigorous and decided 
spirit which had hitherto marked the action of this com- 
mittee, and of prosecuting the undertaking with that 
degree of earnestness in which it had been commenced, 
— an earnestness, it would seem, commensurate only 
with their conviction of its imperative necessity, — they 
appear to have at once proceeded to remove the build- 
ing from the estates purchased as above, in order to clear 
the site ; and, probably, also paid some compensation 

committee's report. 9 

to the tenants for vacating their leases, as an order of 
inquiry " as to the reasons of this course," was intro- 
duced, by the friends of a slower policy, on the Uth of 
October, and, as appears by the record, failed of adop- 
tion. But still no decided action had been reached, 
upon the main question of the new building, at the 
expiration of the municipal year of 1839. 

On the 23d of September, of that year, it had been 
"Ordered, that the Joint Committee, on the erection of 
a new City Hall, be instructed to pay the sum of $500 
for the best plan and model for a City Hall that shall 
be presented to said committee, on or before the first 
day of December next." But the temporary measures 
of relief which grew out of all this effort, and with the 
results of which we have from that day to the present 
been compelled to accommodate ourselves as we best 
might, appear only in the entries of the following year. 

On the 15th of January, 1840, it was ordered in con- 
currence, " That the report in relation to the alteration 
of the old County Court House to fit it for the purpose 
of a City Hall, and which was referred to the consid- 
eration of the present City Council, be taken from the 
files and referred to a committee to consider and report 
as soon as practicable." On the 18th of May follow- 
ing, — the Mayor and Aldermen having, on the 11th 
of the same month, refused to concur with the action of 
the Common Council to fit up the old building, — a 
committee of conference was appointed on the subject- 
matter of the difference between the two branches of 
the City Council, and with the best results ; since on 
the 27th of July this committee reported three different 


plans of alteration, with estimates of the expense of 
each, and the third plan named, having hecn recom- 
mended hy them for adoption, was fully adopted in 
concurrence, at an estimated expense of $14,475. On 
the 19th of Octoher, 1840, the Joint Standing Com- 
mittee on Public Buildings reported that they had made 
all contracts, for the alteration of the building, within 
the sum thus placed at their disposal, and that the same 
is now in rapid progress. The grounds in front, which 
had been purchased for an extension of building area, 
were ordered to be laid out and enclosed with an iron 
fence; and, on the 15th of March, 1841, on the report 
of the committee that the building would be ready for 
the next meeting of the Common Council, it was voted to 
occupy it for that purpose. On the 18th day of March, 
a convention of both branches was held, to dedicate the 
new City Hall, and an address was delivered on the 
occasion by the Mayor, Hon Jonathan Chapman, being- 
No. 9 of City Documents on file. An extract from this 
sensible production will show the grounds on which 
the speaker judged the movement to be worthy of con- 
gratulating the city authorities of that day ; while, at 
the same time, it must lead us to the reflection that 
such grounds, at the present time, no longer exist, and 
that the growth of the city has placed us now in a 
similar position to that from which the Mayor of 1841 
informs the city government that they were happy to 
have been relieved. "We have now," says this address, 
" rooms sufficiently spacious for every department and 
office of the government. What is of great importance, 
also, we have now for the first time all the officers of 

committee's report. 1 1 

the government under one roof; a circumstance, not 
only important to the despatch of business, but valuable 
as bringing all the officers into more frequent inter- 
course, and exciting feelings of entire unity and har- 
mony amongst them." This desirable state of things, it 
is evident, no longer exists, as we have long since out- 
grown the area of accommodation which alone rendered 
it possible. Other considerations which follow are, 
however, equally applicable now as then, since we still 
remain, as in the words of the address, "in a central 
yet quiet spot, everything around," if not " within," as 
remarked in the concluding observations, " seeming all 
that a reasonable being could desire or ask " for the 
purpose of such a structure. 

It was evident from the first, however, that the occu- 
pancy of this building was, as we have already stated, 
to be regarded as only a temporary measure of relief. 
If each department and each officer of the city govern- 
ment were, for the first time in our municipal history, 
introduced into apartments sufficiently spacious for 
their daily uses, there was yet nothing of that wise 
provision for " the probable growth of the city and for 
the extension of the city business within a few years," 
to which the previous report of Mayor Eliot had so 
significantly alluded. The building was indeed accom- 
modated to all the more pressing demands of that day, 
but it could be made to accommodate no more. And 
although there is no doubt that the alterations at that 
time effected in it should, on the whole, be regarded 
as eminently judicious for that period, yet the fact 
canuot be overlooked that its restricted accommodations 


became quite apparent within five years after its first 
occupation by the government. Within nine years after, 
these deficiencies had in fact become the subject of 
repeated discussion in both branches of the City Council. 
The increased number of offices necessarily created, 
together with the natural and inevitable increase of 
business in every already existing department, the result 
of demands consequent upon the growing wealth and 
position of the city, had reduced the building within so 
short a term of years to a condition of unfitness for the 
wants of the government, almost as great, compara- 
tively, as had been experienced in the building which 
they had left on the occasion of their former removal. 
Each year only added to the growing weight of the 
inconvenience, and on the 21st of February, 1850, an 
order passed the Board of Aldermen " that the Mayor 
and Aldermen Rogers and Ilolbrook, with such as the 
Common Council may join, be a committee to inquire 
into the expediency of making additions to the City 
Hall." The order subsequently passed the Common 
Council in concurrence, and Messrs. Richards, Seaver, 
and Appleton were joined to the committee on the part 
of the Council. 

The history of the various and repeated efforts which 
have been made to bring this matter to a successful 
issue by almost every successive city government since 
the first introduction of the order of 1850, would alone 
be sufficient to convince us that it is our imperative 
duty no longer to evade or postpone the responsibility 
of early and decided action. There is scarcely a volume 
of the City Records, from that day to this, in which the 

committee's report. 13 

partial and abortive attempts to provide the city with a 
suitable edifice for the decent accommodation of their 
municipal authorities fail to hold a large and con- 
spicuous place. No harmonious action having resulted 
from the order of 1850, on the 13th day of January, 
1851, it was again " Ordered, that Alderman Briggs, 
Holbrook, and Smith, with such as the Common Council 
may join, be a committee to consider the subject of 
making an addition to the City Hall, for the further 
accommodation of the city officers," and the Council 
readily concurring, joined on its part Messrs. Swallow, 
Richards, and Smith. On the 17th of February, this 
joint committee made a report upon the imperative 
necessity which existed for such addition, and on the 
24th of the same month, they were authorized to offer 
a premium for the best plan that should be offered 
within fourteen days from the passage of the order. 
But still no further harmonious result appears to have 
been arrived at as a consequence of this action than had 
marked the abortive effort of the preceding year. 

The year 1852 soon opened with a repetition of the 
same attempt at action. But by this time the project 
for increased accommodation in the City Hall had 
become entangled with another question, which seri- 
ously retarded the progress it might otherwise have 
been expected to have made. On the 1st day of March, 
an order of the Common Council, appointing Messrs. 
Swallow, Lincoln, Lawrence, Sprague, and Nicolson, 
with such as the Mayor and Aldermen may join, a 
committee to consider the subject of making an addition 
to the City Hall, for the accommodation of the city 


officers, and for the Public Library, came up to the 
Board of Aldermen for concurrence, and Aldermen 
Ober, James, and Reed, were accordingly joined on the 
part of the latter board. On the 15th of April following, 
it was " Ordered, that the Joint Standing Committee 
who have in charge the subject of making additions to 
the City Hall be authorized to report any plan they 
may deem expedient by which accommodation for all 
the city officers and for the Public Library may be had 
in one building." But this crude and anomalous idea 
was happily disposed of by the good sense of the 
committee, who, as the easiest means of averting a 
result so utterly fatal to the uses or convenience of both 
buildings, on the 10th day of May following, reported 
through their chairman, Mayor Seaver, " That it is not 
expedient for the City Council to take any further 
action in the premises at the present time," and thus, 
for another year, the opportunity for the much desired 
improvement was again lost. 

The year 1853 having been, the period in which the 
great work of the present Public Library was first 
seriously considered, it was deemed unadvisable to bring- 
forward the claims of any other project which would 
necessarily involve the city in any great expenditure. 
No attempt at any action in the matter of a new City 
Hall, was therefore made in either branch of the city 
government for that year. And this state of feeling 
probably continued throughout the greater part of the 
following year, during which the steps toward building 
the Library were actively taken. We have seen that 
the preceding City Councils had in each case taken up 

committee's report. 15 

the subject of the City Hall with considerable vigor 
in the first month or two of their administration, and 
that the decision upon it seemed to fade away before 
the pressure of other and more immediate, because only 
temporary, questions as they came, each, towards the 
end of their respective terms of service. In fact, it 
has generally been found that any attempt to make an 
appropriation of any magnitude, if not acted upon and 
some definite conclusion arrived at upon it before the 
summer recess, is rendered almost hopeless of success in 
the later sessions of the year. The members naturally, 
perhaps, prefer to leave the decision upon the expendi- 
ture to be incurred in the hands of their incoming 
successors, under whose more immediate direction the 
necessary appropriations are to be expended. But the 
city government of 1854 still appear to have felt it 
incumbent on them not to go out of office without 
adding something of their own to the swelling testi- 
mony on the subject of this crying necessity, which the 
records of the previous years had already rolled up. 
Accordingly, as one of their latest acts, on the 28th 
day of December they delivered themselves of their 
share of conviction in the following entry : " Whereas, 
the present City Hall is insufficient, inconvenient, and 
in many respects unsuitable for the transaction of the 
various and rapidly increasing public business of the 
City, therefore, Resolved, As the opinion of the City 
Council, that the true interest of the City requires the 
erection at an early day of a new and more commodious 
City Hall, equal to the present and prospective wants of 
the City." And on the 30th day of December this 


resolution was referred to the next City Council for 
their attention. 

The work on the Public Library, however, still con- 
tinuing through the year 1855, no action of any kind 
was taken in regard to the matter during that year. 
But on the 17th of March, 1856, it was again "Ordered, 
That the Committee on Public Buildings consider and 
report what repairs and additions are necessary to be 
made to the City Hall, with authority to procure plans 
and estimates ; " and this act was approved by the Mayor 
on the 18th of the same month. The Joint Standing 
Committee on Public Buildings having reported to the 
Common Council in favor of the enlargement, on the 
5th of May it was further "Ordered, That the whole 
subject of the report of the Committee on Public Build- 
ings, respecting repairs and alterations of the City Hall. 
be recommitted to said committee, with authority to 
procure plans and estimates of said repairs and altera- 
tions, or of a new building, or of both, at their dis- 
cretion." A plan having been brought forward, in 
consequence of this order, on the 11th of July follow- 
ing an order Avas passed in concurrence, " That the 
Committee on Public Buildings have further time to 
report on an enlargement of the old City Hall, or the 
erection of a new one." But no further decision 
appears to have been arrived at before the expiration 
of the year. 

The city government of 1857 again took up the 
familiar subject. On the 6th of April it was ordered, 
in concurrence, " That the Committee on Public Build- 
ings be requested to inquire and report if further 

committee's report. 17 

accommodation be required for the city government and 
officers, and if so, by what means it may be best sup- 
plied." And this order, thus referred, produced from 
the pen of the able and experienced chairman of that 
committee, — the late Mr. Alderman Bonney, — a 
report by far the most full, interesting, and conclusive 
that has ever appeared upon the subject ; looking at 
the whole matter in all its bearings, and touching upon 
all its requirements in a manner which may be con- 
sidered to exhaust whatever might properly be said 
upon the question. " The order," says tins well- 
considered report, " contemplates two inquiries : first, 
whether any, and if any, what further accommodations 
are required, and where, and in what way, and by 
what means such want may best be supplied. It is 
not to be presumed that your committee are to con- 
strue the order strictly, and look only to wants that are 
imperative ; for, if so, we should say at once that there 
is no officer who has not some place or office where he 
can be seen and consulted upon public business, either 
within or without the walls of the City Hall. But we 
presume that we are to inquire whether the officers of 
the government, and the public who have to transact 
business with such officers, have such accommodations 
as it becomes the most opulent city (relatively) now 
in the nineteenth century to furnish ; and whether in 
appearance even, the City Hall is what it should be, as 
the representative habitation of that government, to 
say nothing of the inconvenience occasioned to those 
of us who assist in the transaction of the public busi- 
ness, and without compensation therefor, in having to 


go into three or four buildings in as many streets, to 
chase up a fact or to get information that ought to be 
near at hand, and within the walls of the same build- 
ing. We presume further, that the inquiry has refer- 
ence to the extent of accommodations within the City 
Hall building, and what are required to be, or ought 
to be within such building, and how far they are now 
so provided. 

" We give an answer to this inquiry briefly, when we 
say that ten distinct departments of the public service have 
their offices without the City Hall building, and that sev- 
eral of them require more than one room to each 
department ; while the balance, that are now accommo- 
dated in the City Hall building have not the accom- 
modations they require, and very few indeed have in 
extent, and none in security from fire, such accommo- 
dations as the public have a right to demand at our 

This report was laid on the table and ordered to be 
printed (City Document No. 42), in the Common 
Council, on the 7th of May, 1857, and on the 8th of 
June following came up before the Board of Aldermen 
in the following form, as appears from their record of 
that year : 

" The Joint Standing Committee of Public Buildings, 
to whom was referred the order of the 8th of April, 
requesting the committee to inquire and report if fur- 
ther accommodation," &c, &c, reported as per City 
Document, No. 42, that such accommodations are 

committee's report. 19 

imperatively required for the reasons therein stated, 
which report was accepted hy the Common Council, 
and the following resolve and order were passed : 

Resolved, That in the opinion of the City Council, more and 
better accommodations for the government are required, and that 
such accommodations should be provided within the limits of the 
City Hall building ; and especially is it important that the several 
offices for the government should be much more secure from tire 
than they now are, or can be made without an entire renovation 
of the present building; therefore it is Ordered, that the Com- 
mittee on Public Buildings procure plans to be made for a 
building for the city's use on the site of the present City Hall 
(and also on the Public Garden), with the estimates of the ex- 
pense thereof, with the required rooms for all the present City 
Officers, and that for this purpose the sum of $2,000 be, and the 
same is hereby appropriated. And the question coming up 
before the Board of Aldermen for concurrence in this resolve 
and order, the same were fully concurred in, with the substitution 
only of $1,000 for $2,000 as the amount thus appropriated. 

But at the next meeting of the Aldermen, on the 15th 
of June, the encouraging propositions which had thus 
been adopted were again reconsidered in that Board, — 
Alderman Bonney having moved that " in view of the 
pressing state of the finances the same be postponed, 
but recommending the subject to the early consideration 
of our successors." On the 22d of June it appears 
that the Common Council had, in the interim, non-con- 
curred in the resolution of postponement, and that 
they insisted on their previous vote to take immediate 
and decided action in this important matter. No 
other course remained open to the Board of Aldermen, 


entertaining the views expressed in the resolution of 
the 15th, than to lay the matter on the tahle, where it 
remained until the 28th of December. On that day 
the Aldermen insisted on their vote of the 15th of 
June ; and the Common Council concurring, as it would 
have been useless to have done anything more, the 
nineteenth year of attempted action for the purpose of 
providing the City of Boston with proper and suitable 
quarters for their government passed fruitlessly away. 

Their successors of the next year, 1858, to whose 
early consideration the matter had been thus recom- 
mended, acquitted themselves of their trust in the most 
summary manner. On the 8th of February in that 
year, it was ordered, " That all documents of the pre- 
vious city governments in relation to the erection of a 
new City Hall be taken from the files and referred to 
the Committee on Public Buildings." But at the next 
meeting, on 15th of February, the order was on motion 
laid on the table, and the matter was thus again indefi- 
nitely postponed. 

On the 25th of July, 1859, a further attempt was 
made to proceed in the business. On that day it was 
" Ordered, that so much of the Mayor's Message on the 
subject of the Back Bay Lands as relates to the neces- 
sity of further accommodations for a City Hall, be 
referred to the Committee on Public Buildings." The 
Committee kept the matter by them till their last meet- 
ing on the 29th of December, when they again reported 
reference to the next City Council. 

The introduction of the subject in the city govern- 
ment for the year 1860, was the occasion for giving it 
a greater amount of attention than it had ever before 

committee's report. 21 

received in a single year. As early in the year as the 
Kith of January, an order "passed referring that portion 
of the Mayor's Address which related to the erection 
of a City Hall, and to the enlargement of the courts, 
to a joint committee of both branches of the City Council. 
As early as the 6th of February, this committee reported, 
" That, having given the subject a careful consideration, 
they are unanimously of the opinion that it is not now, 
and probably will not be for many years, expedient to 
remove the City Hall from its present location, near the 
business centre, and, therefore, as the building now 
occupied for that purpose is one of great solidity, and 
well adapted without material change for the accommo- 
dation of many departments of the government, they 
therefore advise that an enlargement of the same be 
made towards School Street, of sufficient capacity to 
afford ample room for all the present and prospective 
requirements of the city government, for at least twenty 
years to come. Should the time however arrive when 
the public may demand that the City Hall should be 
located further south, the new rooms proposed to be 
erected would then be, from their position, well adapted 
for renting for business purposes." The committee 
also recommended the passage of an order authorizing 
the Committee on Public Buildings to procure plans and 
estimates for the enlargement of the present building 
in a southerly direction. The report was carefully 
drawn up and, by the Committee on Printing, author- 
ized to be printed on the 5th day of June, — being 
City Document, No. 44, of printed Documents now on 
file. But the diversity of views which prevailed 
appear to have induced a more than usual delay of 


action, and it was not until the 5th of January, 1861, 
the last meeting of the municipal year, that the majority 
of the committee reported a plan at an estimated cost 
of $100,000, and the minority of the committee having 
reported another at an estimated cost of $120,000, the 
whole subject was again recommended to the notice of 
their successors. 

The year 1S61 brought another urgent reference, in 
the Annual Address of the Mayor, to the absolute 
necessity for other, better and safer accommodation for 
all the branches of the city government. And the mat- 
ter has once more been handed over to a Committee of 
the present year on a repeated assurance from the same 
source, that it is incumbent on us to take some decided 
action in reference to it before our own term of service 
expires. In this point of view, that portion of the 
Mayor's Address has again been referred to your Com- 
mittee for consideration. 

We have thus gone over in detail, but as briefly as the 
subject would allow, the whole history of the original 
efforts which led to the temporary occupation of the 
present building, and have brought up in review a 
record of the earnest and reiterated efforts which have 
since been made, extending over a period of twelve 
years, to procure some better and safer depository of 
our important public archives. We think it a question 
which in all decency should now be met and settled. 
It is a ghost in our municipal councils which will not 
be laid. Year after year it has returned to vex our 
meetings with fruitless debates, and to encumber our 
committees with useless action. But, meanwhile, all 

committee's repobt. 23 

the branches of the public service arc embarrassed and 
impeded in their daily routine, — the utmost inconven- 
ience is impatiently borne alike by all classes of the 
public officers, — the limited accommodations of those 
within the building giving them but little advantage 
over those who are quartered outside in leased premises, 
while an amount of rent is annually paid for this exter- 
nal and partial accommodation, equal to the interest the 
city would pay on a principal of more than $100,000. 
We submit that the reproach implied in a submission 
to this state of facts is one which a city like Boston 
ought no longer to endure ; and that the duties attached 
to our own term of service are marked by no other 
feature of a more pressing and immediate responsibility 
than arises out of the necessity which has been set 
forth in such strong terms, and by so many successive 
boards of our predecessors in office. 

The question of location has always, with a very slight 
exception, been considered a settled one. The present 
site will always remain, as now, in the immediate vicinity 
of the great business centres of the city. The area is 
ample for extension on the rear, as well as on the front, 
to an extent that shall not materially diminish the 
pleasantness and beauty of the desirable square which 
lies open to School Street, — while the ample passage- 
way on the east side and the open area of the Cemetery 
on the west, give assurance of a full supply of light 
and air to every portion of the structure. The land in 
front, so wisely purchased under the administration of 
Mayor Eliot, at a cost of $60,000, now represents a 
value of more than $250,000, if required to be bought 


at the present time, in any location similarly situated, — 
an advantage both to the convenience and appearance 
of the building which it would indeed be difficult to 
estimate in any precise pecuniary amount, and which 
might yet be thought an unjustifiable and extravagant 
expenditure, were it now for the first time incurred, by 
the payment of anything approaching to its actual and 
substantial value. If the city government, should give 
up the present spot therefore, it would be extremely 
difficult to secure another location of equal advantage 
in this respect, by any outlay which they could readily 
justify either to their constituents or to themselves. 

It is perfectly obvious to your Committee that previ- 
ous city governments have by their several Committees 
on Public Buildings, and particularly by the more en- 
lightened action of later years, developed projects now 
preserved among the records of your Committee, some 
of which would probably be found to be sufficiently 
complete and comprehensive to meet the present emer- 
gency, or at the least to be well adapted for our renewed 
and attentive consideration. We believe the present to 
be a most judicious time for undertaking the erection 
of the much needed structure, finding our reasons for 
this conviction in the present largely reduced prices 
of materials, and in the abundance and cheapness of 
unemployed labor. And we think it better on every 
ground of financial policy to capitalize the principal of 
the sums now paid for outside rents, and at a low and 
permanent rate of interest, than to have those rents go 
on increasing from year to year, with the increase in 
the value for other purposes of those temporary accom- 


modations for which so large a sum is even now com- 
pelled to be paid. And we recommend immediate 
action, therefore, on the whole subject, not less on 
grounds of true economy than on those of convenience 
and propriety, which for so many years have been suc- 
cessively put forth. We trust, too, that we shall be 
found in this matter to have learned some degree of 
wisdom from the experience of our predecessors, and 
that a subject of this importance having again and again 
been referred, at the instance of almost every Mayor 
who has filled the civic chair, may not once more be put 
on record as having been considered with attention, 
reported on with entire conviction, postponed until after 
the recess of midsummer, and at last fading away for 
the twentieth time in the later sessions of the year into 
a feeble recommendation to our successors, to do some- 
thing in a matter which we had not the nerve to under- 
take as a part of our own imperative duty, — and while 
the responsibility as well as the merit of doing it, at- 
tached not to their but to our own term of municipal 

There is another consideration which has impressed 
itself forcibly upon the minds of your Committee, and 
which furnishes an additional reason for immediate 
action. The roof and some other parts of the jjresent 
building are in such a condition as will very soon require 
extensive repairs, and it cannot be occupied for any 
great length of time, with comfort for the officials or 
credit to the city, without such repairs arc made. Your 
Committee have not made any estimate of the amount 
which would be likely to be required for such a pur- 
pose, nor have they deemed it worth while to do so 


until some action luis been had upon the present propo- 
sition. But they have little doubt that a considerable 
sum would be positively necessary, and they would sug- 
gest that it would be injudicious to incur such an outlay 
upon a building so confessedly inadequate, even for the 
purposes of its present occupancy. They would feel 
very little satisfaction in going to a further expense, 
when it is certain that the lapse of each successive year 
would only render it more and more fruitless for any 
permanent good. 

Impressed with these convictions, therefore, your 
Committee have sought to examine the whole subject 
of a new City Hall, with the utmost care, and fully to 
mature in their own minds the whole idea of the requi- 
sitions and the proper arrangement of the much needed 
structure. To this end, they have thoroughly gone over 
not only all the records, bearing ou the subject, now 
preserved in the city archives, but have also made a 
close and critical examination of all the plans prepared 
by various architects in former years, in pursuance of 
the several votes of the City Councils, to which allusion 
has been made in the preceding pages of this report. 
In the performance of this task, they have been mate- 
rially aided by the assistance and advice of most of the 
city officials, whose daily routine of duties at the City 
Hall enables them to judge of the imperative require- 
ments of any new structure, and particularly of the 
relative position and accommodation of all the apart- 
ments for which it is most desirable to make provision. 
The Superintendent of Public Buildings in particular 
has been assiduous in his endeavors to give them the 
full benefit of his long experience at the City Hall, 

committee's RErORT. 27 

and of his intimate acquaintance with the internal neces- 
sities and conveniences of arrangement which in the 
opinion of your Committee should render such a new 
building a model of well-matured and economical con- 
struction for civic purposes. Nor have several of your 
Committee been without a considerable experience per- 
sonally, extending over quite a lengthened term of 
annual inquiry into the various requirements of the 
subject, as well as the best and most feasible methods 
of meeting them in a satisfactory manner. And they 
are led to believe that they have thus been able to avail 
themselves of a pretty large share of whatever knowl- 
edge or information is likely to be most practically use- 
ful on a subject involving many conflicting details of 
distribution, economy, and taste. 

As the final result of their labors, your Committee 
have caused to be prepared a plan embodying the 
matured convictions of their best judgment, designed 
and arranged under their own immediate direction and 
superintendence. They have intended fully to provide 
in it for the due and convenient location of the several 
apartments necessary for the accommodation of all 
the various branches of the city government. And in 
order as far as possible to avoid the reiterated, and as 
they cannot but think, needless, delays of former years, 
they now present it as a part of this report, together 
with the following description* of the arrangement, 
accommodation, and style of the proposed structure. 

* It will appear by the subsequent description of the building as finished 
that changes have been made in the internal arrangement of the building. 



City Physician's public office . . 27X28 feet, 12 foot high. 

City Physician's operating room . 23X28 feet, 12 feet high. 

Waiting room, in connection with Direc- 
tors of Public Institutions . .25x30 feet, 12 feet high. 

Clerks of Institutions . . . 18X25 feet, 12 feet high. 

Storeroom for Messenger . . . 14X20 feet, 12 feet high. 

Storeroom for Superintendent of Public 

Buildings 1HX 20 feet, 12 feet high. 

Engine House .... 27X33 feet, 12 feet high. 

Meeting room for Engine Co. . . 27X28 feet, 12 feet high. 

Apartment containing twelve water-clos- 
ets and eighteen urinals . . 30X32 feet, 12 feet high. 

Cellar for fuel .... 31X57 feet, 12 feet high. 

Cellar for heating apparatus . . 15X46 feet, 12 feet high. 

Hall and staircases . . . . 32X76 feet, 12 feet high. 

Two entrances from Court Square . 12X25 feet, 12 feet high. 


Treasurer's business room . . 57X31.6 feet, 15 feet high. 

Treasurer's private room . . . 13X14 feet, 15 feet high. 

Auditor 27X36 feet, 15 feet high. 

Lavatory and water-closets for Auditor 

and Treasurer .... 12X14 feet, 15 feet high. 

Safes for Auditor and Treasurer, each 6X12 feet, 15 feet high. 

Water Registrar's business room . 29X31 feet, 15 feet high. 

Water Registrar's private room . . 13X14 feet, 15 feet high. 

Assessors' room . . . . 27X40 feet, 15 feet high. 

Police general room .... 27X32 feet, 15 feet high. 

Chief of Police room . . . 16X26 feet, 15 feet high. 

(with private staircase leading to the 

Mayor's private room). 

Overseers of the Poor . . . 25X30 feet, 15 feet high. 

Directors of Public Institutions . . 18x25 feet, 15 feet high. 

committee's report. 29 

Hall and staircases . . . . 32 X7G foot, 15 feet high. 
Entrance corridor, connecting principal 

entrance from School St. with hall 15X48 feet, 15 feet high. 

Two staircases from Court Sq. entrance 12X25 feet, 15 feet high. 


Mayor ami Aldermen's room . . '10X46 feet, 25 feet high. 

Mayor's lobby with accommodation for 

Mayor's Clerk . . . . 10X251 feet, 18 feet high. 

Mayor's private room . . . 25X261 feet, 13 feet high. 

City Clerk's room .... 20X30 feet, 13 feet high. 

City Clerk's private room . . 141X221 feet, 18 feet high. 

City Clerk's mortgages . . . 18X22 feet, 13 feet high. 

City Clerk's safe .... 8X12 feet. 

City Solicitor 16X23 feet, 13 feet high. 

City Solicitor's private room . . 15iX17^feet, 13 feet high. 

Large committee room . . . 25X46 feet, 13 feet high. 

Committee room and Clerk of Commit- 
tee's room .... 18X25 feet, 18 feet high. 

Committee room .... 18X25 feet, 13 feet high. 

Superintendent Public Buildings . 23X26 J feet, 13 feet high. 

Superintendent of Public Buildings' 

private room .... 16X161 feet, 13 feet high. 

City Messenger .... 18JX18J- feet, 13 feet high. 

Hall and staircases .... 32X70 feet, 13 feet high. 


Water Commissioners' business room . 23X201 feet, 11 feet high. 

Water Commissioners' private room . HiXIGJ- feet, 11 feet high. 
Supt. of Sewers and Supt. of Lands' 

business room .... 24X31-J- feet, 11 feet high. 

Private rooms of the above . . 11X16 feet, 11 feet high. 

City Registrar 17X3U- feet, 11 feet high. 

Superintendent of Schools . . 17^X25 feet, 11 feet high. 

School Committee .... 46X25 feet, 11 feet high. 




Committee room 
Superintendenl of Streets . 

Superintendent of Streets, private 
Engineers of Fire Department . 
Superintendent of Internal Health 
Supt. of Internal Health, private 
Hall and staircases 
Continuation of Mayor and Aldermen's 

room up through this stoiy . 46X46 feet 

mx25 feet, 11 feet high. 
'JIX3H feet, 11 feet high. 
14X16J feet, 11 feet. high. 
17X3 H feet. 
23X2C4 feet. 
lnxKU feet. 
76X32 feet. 


Common Council room 

Common Council conversation room 

large committee room . 

Clerk of Council .... 

Clerk of Council, private room . 

Safe for do. ..... 

Dressing room for Council . 

Range of water-closets, &c. 

Committee room .... 
it it 

It (( 

II 11 



Superintendent of Lamps . 

Hall and staircases .... 

4CX-1G feet, 38 feet high. 



11 feet 
11 feet 
1 1 feet 
11 feet 
11 feet 
11 feet 
11 feet 
11 feet 
11 feet 
11 feet 
11 feet 
11 feet 
11 feet 
11 feet 



Gallery plan of Common Council and suite of fourteen rooms of 

various sizes in the French-roof story. 
The story under the dome, and the dome itself, to be used for Fire 

and Police Telegraph, and for sleeping-rooms for the operators. 



The construction of the brick walls surrounding the 
Hall in the centre affords an opportunity for the most 
thorough and perfect ventilation of every apartment 
throughout the building. Through a series of hollow 
brick flues, connected with each apartment by registers, 
and at the top, with the main hot-air shaft from the 
heating apparatus, an entire circulation of air through- 
out the structure can at all times be easily maintained. 
The advantage of this arrangement will be particularly 
felt in the council chamber, an apartment which is liable 
at times, — such as the yearly organization of the city 
government, the conventions of the two branches, and 
the debates upon matters of more than ordinary inter- 
est, — to overcrowding of its area, and the consequent 
ill effects of a heated and vitiated atmosphere. Against 
such a state of things, the system of ventilation pro- 
posed would, it is believed, afford complete security. 

It is desirable to observe, in this connection, that the 
council chamber is provided with deep and ample gal- 
leries, in a space not readily available for other pur- 
poses, and which will afford complete accommodation 
for a large attendance of the public without encroach- 
ing upon the floor of the chamber. 

The external style and appearance of the proposed 
building are sufficiently shown in the drawings of the 
various fronts which are herewith submitted, and need 
therefore but little of additional description. They 
have been very carefully prepared, in accordance with 
the views of your Committee, by two architects of well 
known standing and ability, and arc believed to be such 
as will reflect permanent credit on the taste of their 


designers. The style selected is one which grows nat- 
urally out of the character and requirements of the 
structure. It will at once be recognized by all those 
conversant with such matters, as the prevailing style 
of modern Europe, a style which the taste of the pres- 
ent Emperor of France, in particular, has so largely 
illustrated in most of the modern works of the French 
capital. Derived originally from Italian sources, and 
particularly from the later edifices of the Venetian 
Republic, it has now been so successfully naturalized 
in other countries as to have become the prevailing 
manner for most of those edifices of a dignified and 
permanent character, other than churches, which are 
destined to be regarded as the best architectural rec- 
ords of our time by posterity. Your Committee have 
desired, in this respect, not to fall behind the progress 
of art in other communities, but to present a design 
which, with a due regard to economy and convenience 
of construction, shall yet stand as a fair memorial of 
our own advancement in the knowledge and taste of the 
age. We believe that it will commend itself alike to 
the approbation of the city government and of their 
constituents, as graceful and harmonious in proportion 
and detail, and particularly as being light and cheerful 
in its prevailing character, and rich in its general 
appearance, without any very elaborate or costly deco- 
ration of its parts. We think it expressive in its out- 
line and arrangement, of the purposes for which it is 
proposed to be erected, and such as will impress the 
spectator with a sense of fitness and propriety for the 
principal municipal structure of an enterprising and 

committee's report. 33 

thrifty community. And we arc confident that the pub- 
lic in general would have good reason to he fully satis- 
fied with it as a permanent ornament to the central and 
imposing locality on which it is proposed to place it. 

From approximate estimates, made by reliable me- 
chanics of well known standing, your Committee are 
led to believe that the building as proposed can be 
erected of suitable materials, and in the best style, for 
a sum not exceeding $160,000, if contracted for during 
the present year. They would therefore recommend 
the passage of the following orders. 


Committee on Public Buildings. 

Ordered: That the Committee on Public Buildings be directed 
to erect a suitable building for a City Hall, on the site of the 
present building and grounds, in general accordance with the 
plans submitted by them this day, at a cost not exceeding the 
sum of One Hundred and Sixty Thousand Dollars. 

Ordered : That the Treasurer be, and he is hereby directed 
to borrow, under the direction of the Committee on Finance, the 
sum of One Hundred and Sixty Thousand Dollars, the same to 
be appropriated for the purpose of the erection of a City Hall. 


Alderman Rich submitted to the Board the following- 
order : 

Ordered: That in consideration of the loud calls on the City 
for large appropriations of money for war purposes, the Com- 
mittee on Public Buildings, having in charge the erection of a 
new City Hall, be instructed to take into consideration the 
expediency of abandoning the undertaking, or suspending any 
further proceedings thereon for the present time, and that said 
Committee be requested to report the result of their delibera- 
tion at the earliest practical moment, and also that said Com- 
mittee be requested to report, in detail, what rooms are occu- 
pied by city officials who could be accommodated in the new 
building, whether said rooms belong to the City, or not, and the 
rent paid for each room. 

The order was read twice, and, on motion of Aid. F. 
Richards, the subject was indefinitely postponed by the 
following vote: Yeas, — Aldermen Parmenter, Pray, 
Francis Richards, Spinney, and Wilson, 5. Nays, — 
Aldermen Amory, Hanson, Paul, and Rich, 4. Absent, 
— Aldermen Norcross, Henshaw, and C. A. Richards, 
3. A motion to reconsider the foregoing motion (to 
indefinitely postpone) was made and lost. 

The foregoing report was accepted, and the accom- 
panying orders were passed, by concurrent votes of both 
branches of the city government. On the 28th day of 
July, a petition of George Rowland Shaw, and others, 
" that all action in relation to the proposed City Hall 
may be deferred for the present," came before the Board 


of Aldermen, from the Common Council, and was read 
and placed on file. On the 4th of August, following, a 
contract for the work of the foundation wall and base- 
ment having been made with Messrs, Adams, Roberts, 
and Jacobs, the necessary preparations were completed 
in season for laying the corner-stone on the 22d of 
December, and the ceremony took place on that day, 
in the presence of a large and interested concourse of 








The corner-stone of the new City Hall of the City of 
Boston was laid on December 22, 1862, the anniver- 
sary of the Landing of the Pilgrims at Plymouth. 

At the request of the Committee on Public Buildings, 
the Mayor invited the officers of the Grand Lodge of 
Masons in Massachusetts to participate in laying the 
corner-stone of this edifice. The invitation was most 
courteously accepted, and the Masonic ceremonies 
formed an interesting part of the proceedings on this 

The size of the new building allowed the foundation 
and front wall to be erected and prepared for the 
corner-stone, while the city government occupied the 
old City Hall. A procession was therefore formed, 
under the direction of the City Messenger, in the room 
of the Mayor and Aldermen, which proceeded to the 
platform erected for the ceremonies, in the following- 
order : 


Brigade Band. 

Chief of Police. 

Committee and Superintendent of Public Buildings, and Architects 

of the new City Hall. 


Grand Master, and Officers of the Grand Lodge. 

Past Mayors and Invited Guests. 

Board of Aldermen. 

Common Council. 

Other Members of the City Government. 

The exercises commenced with, the following 

Cliairman of the Committee on Public Jiullillnijs. 

Mr. Mayor : The Committee on Public Buildings 
of the City of Boston, under the direction of the City 
Council, have commenced the erection of a new City 
Hall, and they have made such progress that it becomes 
proper at this time, in continuance of an old custom, to 
deposit some mementoes and statistics of the times in 
which its erection was commenced. The Committee 
have directed me, sir, to request you, as the head of the 
government which has inaugurated this important and 
necessary improvement, to officiate over such ceremo- 
nies as you may deem proper for this occasion. 



Mr. Chairman : In conformity with the arrange- 
ments of the Committee on Public Buildings of the 
City Council, and in compliance with your request, we 
are here assembled in presence of the members of the 
City Council, and of the officers of the Most Worshipful 
Grand Lodge of Masons in Massachusetts, to lay the 
corner-stone of a building to be erected for the use of 
the Municipal Government of the city of Boston. 

Gentlemen of the City Council : The present 
occasion is one of peculiar interest to you as the 
official representatives of our citizens, inasmuch as 
by your action the City of Boston, for the first time 
in her memorable history, is to lay the foundation, 
and erect an edifice for the various departments of 
her government. 

The full, clear and comprehensive report of the 
Committee, made on the 19th of June last (City 
Document, No. 44,) upon this subject, received your 
approving votes with an unanimity as generous as 
it was deserved. The record of the action of the 
various City Councils, from 1838 to 1862, presented 
an array of facts, which not only show the wisdom 
but the necessity of your prompt and decisive action. 

There are some interesting facts in connection 
with the erection of the town houses and town 
halls of the olden time, which may not be inappro- 
priate to mention upon this day, the anniversary of 


the Landing of our Pilgrim Fathers, and upon this 
occasion. It appears that for nearly thirty years 
after the first settlement of Boston, in 1G30, although 
the subject of a town house was frequently agitated, 
the town was without any public building for town 
purposes. In 1656, an influential and wealthy citizen, 
Capt. Robert Kayne, died, and left a considerable 
legacy,* in his will, for the purpose of building 
a town house. 

In March, 1057, a committee; consisting .of Captain 
Savage, Mr. Stodard, Mr. Howchin, and Mr. Edward 
Hutchinson, senior, was appointed " to consider of ye 
modcll of ye Townc House to be built ;" also of the 
expense and location, and to take up subscriptions 
" to propagate such a building." I have before me 
the original subscription paper for the erection of 
this edifice, with the following heading : 

" Whereas, thear is giuen a Confiderable fume by Capt : Kayn 
towards the Building of a towne houfe \v cl1 fume will not ataine 
the Building w ch he mentioneth in his Will, now Confidering the 
vfefulnes of fuch a Structure wee whofe names are vnder written, 
doe ingage our felues our heyres executors for to giue towards 
the aboue fd hous and alio a Condit in the Market place, the 
feuerall fumes vnder written " : 

The first signature is Gov. "Jo. Endecott, £2 10s." 
Next is Deputy Gov. " Hi. Bcllingham in country 
pay, £T0." Then follows: 

* £300. See "Agreement for the Town House," Appendix. 


Edward Tynge, in come, JO 00s OOd. 

John Evered, in goods and come, 10 00s OOd. 

Peter Olliuer, in goods and provisions, 10 00s OOd. 

James Olliuer, provided thare bo a cundit 

withall, in goods and provisions, 12 00s OOd. 

Timothy Atkins will give in hats, 5 00s OOd. 

Hezelriah Usher will pay in English goods, or 
equivalent, twenty poundes, provizo yt ye 

market house be erected and a cundit, 20 00s OOd. 

In this manner three hundred and fifty-six pounds 
were contributed, principally in goods, by one hundred 
and twenty-two of the inhabitants of the town, among 
whom were some of the most distinguished of the 
New England Puritans. 

The result of this effort was the building of a town 
house of wood, at the head of State Street, where the 
old State House now stands, between the years 1657 
and 1659, at a cost of six hundred and eighty pounds. 
This building was consumed in the great fire which 
occurred in 1711. During the following year (1712), 
another town house, of brick, was erected in the same 
place ; this was also destroyed by fire in 1747, in which 
" the ancient books, early records, and other valuable 
papers were burned." This was regarded then, as now, 
as a serious calamity. In 1748 the building now known 
as the Old State House was erected for a town house, 
but appears to have been occupied by the " General 
Court of the Commonwealth, and the Supreme and 
County Courts." That town houses were generally 
used for the courts is apparent from the fact, that when, 
in 1712, Peter Faneuil, a liberal and wealthy merchant, 


erected " Faneuil Hall," at his own expense, and pre- 
sented it to the town, it is described as containing not 
only " a large and sufficient accommodation for a 
Market place, but lias also superadded a spacious and 
most beautiful Town Hall over it, and several other 
convenient rooms which may prove very beneficial to 
the Town for offices or otherwise." It is also a remark- 
able fact, that, notwithstanding that he proposed to build 
tins at his own charge and make a present of it to the 
town, the proposition was opposed to such an extent at 
a town meeting held in Brattle Street Meeting-house 
in July, 1740, that the generous offer of Mr. Faneuil 
was accepted by only a majority of seven votes — three 
hundred and sixty-seven being in the affirmative, and 
three hundred and sixty in the negative. Singular as 
this vote may seem to have been which decided the 
erection of the most celebrated building connected with 
our national history, it would not be difficult to find 
similar instances of the peculiarities of our people even 
in the present day. 

Faneuil Hall appears to have been the first actual 
town house, as it was also the first city hall, in Boston. 
From 1742 until 1S22, a period of eighty years, the 
rooms were used by the selectmen, town clerk, treasurer, 
and other town officers, while the town meetings were 
held in the main ball. It was here that the first city 
government was organized, in May, 1822, and it con- 
tinued to be occupied by the city officers until Sep- 
tember 17, 1830, when the Old State House was 
remodelled and dedicated as " City Hall." 

In a few years, however, it was found that " the 


inconveniences to which the citizens generally, as well 
as the municipal officers, were exposed by the existing 
arrangements, — the constant and great danger to im- 
portant documents and records from fire, and the insuf- 
ficient space allotted to many of the officers for the 
transaction of the business of their respective depart- 
ments," — could only be remedied by the erection of a 
commodious and suitable building. This was reported 
by Mayor Eliot in May, 1838, and it was then proposed 
to erect " a handsome, well lighted, and well ventilated 
building " upon this spot, at an estimated cost of one 
hundred thousand dollars. The Mayor and Aldermen 
were, however, overruled by the Common Council in 
relation to a new building, and finally, in July, 1840, 
they concurred in an order to alter the old Court House 
into a City Hall, at an estimated expense of $14,475. 
Although the alterations were skilfully and admirably 
made, the size of the building was only adapted to the 
city government at that time, and consequently, within 
a few years, the same inconveniences, from restricted 
accommodations, began to be experienced, which had 
caused the removal from the former building. 

These difficulties continued to increase, and year 
after year, since 1850, the most favorable reports have 
been made, plans, specifications, and estimates have 
been obtained, and each succeeding city government has 
appeared to realize more and more the need of a City 
Hall worthy of a great and prosperous municipality. 
Since this building we are now superseding was first 
occupied for a City Hall, the assessed valuation of 
Boston has increased from ninety-four and one half 



millions in 1840, to three hundred and sixteen millions 
in 1862 In this progress of events, the increase in 
the population and wealth of the city has added largely 
to the duties and responsibilities of its officers. 

To meet these exigencies, new departments and offi- 
cers have been created, and old departments have been 
reorganized and extended. Among the new depart- 
ments are the Police, Water Commissioners, Directors 
of Public Institutions, Commissioners of Public Lands, 
Trustees of the Public Library, and Trustees of Mount 
Hope Cemetery. In addition to these are the following 
officers : City Engineer, City Physician, Water Regis- 
trar, City Registrar, Clerk of Committees and Mayor's 
Clerk ; Superintendents of Internal Health, Public 
Lands, Public Buildings, Public Schools, Telegraphic 
Fire Alarm, and of Lamps ; all of whom, except the 
Trustees of the Public Library, require offices for the 
transaction of the public business. In all the old 
departments, the increase of labor has been very great, 
particularly in those of the City Clerk, Treasurer, Au- 
ditor, and Assessors, and consequently a corresponding 
increase in the number of assistants and clerks has 
been required. 

Under these circumstances, it is self-evident that the 
accommodations furnished in the present City Hall are 
now, and have long been, entirely inadequate for the 
proper performance of the public duties. There are 
forty-seven standing committees of the City Council, 
and but two committee rooms in the City Hall, so that 
the offices of the City Clerk, of the several Superin- 
tendents, and even that of the Mayor, are obliged to be 


used for the meetings of the committees. The rooms 
are generally small, badly lighted, and without ventila- 
tion. One of them is occupied by the recording assist- 
ants to the City Clerk ; another assistant is located in 
the public anteroom used by reporters and other per- 
sons, while the City Clerk and Mayor's Clerk have their 
desks in the room of the Board of Aldermen. The 
Superintendents of Public Lands and of Sewers, with 
their clerks, arc crowded into another, the Superintend- 
ents of Streets and of Internal Health, with two clerks, 
attend to their office duties in an apartment which 
scarcely allows room enough for the desks of the occu- 
pants, while the Superintendent of Public Buildings 
and Clerk of Committees have even worse accommo- 
dations ; and I am confident, that if any one of our 
merchants, who has deemed this building unnecessary, 
would go through the offices in the present City Hall, 
he would not only change his opinion, but would be 
satisfied that the accommodations afforded to the chief 
recording officer of our city are inferior to those for 
the clerks in his own store, and that the City Treas- 
urer, the receiver and disburser of six or seven millions 
of dollars annually, is crowded with his clerks, book- 
keepers, and tellers into a single room, which, for size 
and inconvenience, probably, could not be equalled by 
that of any other city treasurer in the Union. But the 
City Treasurer is not the only sufferer from this state 
of things ; the citizens, on the monthly pay-days, are 
obliged to wait outside the office in the cold, and some- 
times snow and rain, for their turn to enter and receive 
their money, which is not only exceedingly annoying, 


but is an unnecessary waste of time. This would be 
scarcely tolerated in a country town in New England. 
and it is certainly unworthy of the wealth and reputa- 
tion of Boston. 

But it may be asked, admitting all this to be correct, 
was it expedient to erect a new City Hall at this time, 
while the country was struggling under the pressure of 
a disastrous war? It is too true that we are passing 
through a war terrible in its consequences, and which 
may well make the stoutest heart falter at the prospect 
before us, as to the future of our country. But are not 
other works and enterprises, both public and private, 
proceeded with 1 Are we to sit down in despair, as if 
this war was to culminate in a dissolution of the Union, 
and the result of it was to determine whether or not 
our city was to be destroyed by an earthquake 1 Indi- 
viduals do not so regard it. Witness the magnificent 
warehouses, the sumptuous stores, and the palatial resi- 
dences with which they are bordering our streets and 
avenues. Nor is there any demurrer on the part of our 
citizens to the vast sums appropriated and expending 
upon the Public Garden, the City Hospital, the City 
Stables, and other public improvements, not one of 
which bears any comparison, in importance, to the City 
Hall. The latter is to provide for the exigencies of the 
public business ; the former are for ornament, philan- 
thropy, or convenience. Even the war itself has fur- 
nished additional reasons for its erection, inasmuch as it 
has been the cause of adding more than a million of 
dollars to the disbursements from the city treasury 
within the last six months, and it has also required the 


organization of a new department, both ministerial and 
financial, and of a most laborious character, to disburse 
the State aid to the families of our soldiers. 

By procrastinating - its erection even pecuniary inter- 
ests arc sacrificed ; because at no previous time since 
the city was chartered has money been so abundant, or 
could be obtained on such favorable terms ; and the 
advantage of making contracts at this time might not 
again occur for many years. Besides, we must take 
into consideration the fact, that even if the war was to 
be closed forthwith, a long tune must elapse before the 
city would be in any better condition to bear the 
expense ; for, if we feel the pressure during the issue 
of so much paper currency by the government, what 
will hereafter be our condition when, in common with 
other municipalities, we are called upon to furnish the 
means for its redemption \ Could wc then have de- 
ferred the building of a City Hall for ten or twenty 
jears longer, without compromising the public inter- 
ests to a far greater extent than the present expen- 
diture of $160,000, or even $J00,000'! To-day the 
public archives of the city, belonging to many of its 
departments, are exposed to remediless loss by fire 
and other casualties, in ordinary buildings, rented, 
from their necessary location in this vicinity, at high 
if not exorbitant rents. The most valuable are kept in 
safes, but the great mass of papers and public docu- 
ments have no proper place for their security or preser- 
vation. Is not this discreditable to a city which is 
the most wealthy, in proportion to its size, of any in 
the world 1 



There is an astonishing apathy, often amounting to 
culpable neglect, in regard to the preservation of public 
papers. As Chairman of the Committee on Streets, in 
1858, I accidentally learned that all the invaluable plans 
in relation to streets and the public domain, involving 
rights, titles, and legal questions of the utmost impor- 
tance, the loss or destruction of which would be irreme- 
diable in many cases, while the expense of restoring 
others by new surveys would be more than the whole 
cost of a City Hall, had not been kept in any place of 
security except that afforded by the City Engineer's 
office, which was then in the upper rooms of a store on 
Washington Street. In 1859, I brought this subject to 
the attention of the government, and by personal effort 
obtained the erection of the present fire-proof office and 
repository, over the office of the Registry of Deeds. 

For the want of proper places for their preservation, 
our historical records and files of papers have been lost 
to a deplorable extent. Last year I purchased for the 
city, from the estate of a deceased antiquarian, nearly 
two hundred valuable papers, originally belonging to 
the official files of the town, dated from 1GS0 to 1775, 
including nearly all the official papers in relation to the 
erection of Faneuil Hall, and the buildino- of Lone 
Wharf. These papers must have been abstracted 
many years ago, as our present City Clerk has no 
knowledge of their ever having been in his possession ; 
and it is a remarkable fact that there is scarcely a 
paper of any historical interest, previous to 1800, now 
remaining upon our files. Those which remain, and 
the printed documents which have been preserved, 


are arranged in wood cases around the walls of the 
committee rooms, exposed to loss by fire at any time. 

To persons unconnected with public affairs, it is diffi- 
cult to appreciate the exceeding trouble and loss of 
time, from a want of room to arrange the documents 
belonging - to a department for convenient reference. 
There is not an officer in the city government that does 
not daily and hourly suffer from this cause, and the 
number of valuable papers which arc thus mislaid or 
lost causes great annoyance. 

There is another consideration which is worthy of our 
attention. It is that the erection of this City Hall is to 
be commended on the ground of economy, and as a 
means of reducing the taxes upon our citizens. There 
are now one half of the departments located outside of 
the present City Hall ; the rent of the premises they 
occupy is eight thousand dollars per annum. As the 
amount appropriated for the new building ($160,000) 
is to be obtained by a loan for twenty years at five per 
cent, interest, and as these bonds command from thir- 
teen per cent, to fifteen per cent, advance, the interest 
is reduced to less than four and one-half per cent.; and 
amounts to but little over $7,000 per annum, — which 
is from $800 to 1,000 less than is now paid for rents. 
The principal of the loan, or cost of the building, does not 
form a part of the annual city tax, but is gradually pro- 
vided for from sales of public property and other 
receipts, deposited from time to time in the Sinking 
Fund, to meet the bonds at maturity. 

But this is not the only saving. It appears from the 
Auditor's books, that during ten years, from 1852 to 


1862, the expenditures for repairs, alterations, and 
improvements on the present City Hall amount to 
$16,504.24, to which is to he added an unexpended 
appropriation of $4,000 to repair the roof, being a 
total of $20,000, or an average of $2,000 per annum. 
Within the same time there has also been expended 
for repairing and fitting up rented offices $7,264.96, 
and for safes for these offices, $3,144.89 = 10,409.85 ; 
which is an average of more than $1,000 per annum. 
We have thus a grand total of $30,000, or $3,000 per 
annum, which average was not likely to be diminished 
in the future ; and I believe it will be no more than a 
fair statement to say, that under the present arrange- 
ment for the rents and repairs of the public offices, 
the citizens are taxed $11,000 per annum, while the 
interest on the capital to be invested in the new City 
Hall will not exceed $7,500. 

I have thus, gentlemen, endeavored to present some 
of the facts and reasons which, in your judgment, and 
in my own opinion, were sufficient to justify the 
erection of a City Hall at this time. In a city like 
this, increasing so rapidly in wealth and population, 
public improvements cannot remain stationary. When, 
therefore, we consider the vast expenditures which 
have been made in extending the area of our territory 
on the South Bay, and the Neck lands; in laying 
out new avenues, and widening and extending old 
streets; in building the most approved correctional 
and eleemosynary institutions ; in erecting spacious and 
admirably arranged school-houses ; in founding and 
supporting a public library, in every respect worthy 


of the Athens of America ; and in establishing a 
City Hospital destined to become one of the most 
beneficial if not beautiful of our public institutions, 
we cannot but be impressed with the conviction that 
our action in the present instance has been in strict 
conformity with that solemn oath of office we have 
each and all of us taken, to " faithfully and impar- 
tially discharge and perform all the duties incumbent 
upon us, to the best of our knowledge and ability." 

Most Worshipful Grand Master: I herewith pre- 
sent to you a metallic box containing an engraved 
plate, historical documents, and other appropriate 
articles, to be deposited by you in this corner-stone, 
according to the usages of your ancient order. 

The Masonic Ceremonies were then commenced with 
some preliminary remarks by the Grand Master, and 
the invocation of the Divine Blessing, by the Grand 
Chaplain, Rev. Thomas J. Greenwood.* 

♦The Brethren present were: 
M. W. William D. Coolidge, Grand Master. 
R. W. Marshall P. Wilder, Deputy G. Master. 
R. W. Winslow Lewis, Senior G. Warden. 
R. W. Peter C. Jones, Junior G. Warden. 
W. C. C. Dame, G. Treasurer. 
W. Charles W. Moore, G. .Secretary. 
W. T. J. Greenwood, G. Chaplain. 
W. William H. Sampson, Senior G. Deacon. 
W. C. J. Cleveland, Junior G. Deacon. 
W. William D. Stratton, G. Marshal. 
W. Isaac Gary, J. W. Barton, G. Stewards. 
W. Luther L. Tarbell, G. Tyler. 

Also R. W. Benj. Dean, of Boston, Wm. Sutton, of Danvers, and others. 



Supreme Architect of the Universe! Under thy 
bending heavens, the broad canopy that covers all 
our earthly interests, and earthly hopes, we come to 
discharge the appropriate duties of the occasion which 
has called us here. 

We feel it meet, and needful for us, that we should 
first of all invoke thy blessing upon the transactions 
of the hour. 

We come, by appropriate ceremony, agreeably to the 
usages of our ancient and cherished institution, to lay 
the corner-stone of an edifice here to be erected, for 
the use of this city and the convenience of its civil 
government. May thy blessing attend the rite, and 
thine approval sanction what we do. 

We acknowledge our dependence upon thee! and 
we bless tbee that we are dependent, as upon the 
Father of the spirits of all flesh ! 

From early time thy prospering smile has rested 
upon our city, and upon our land. We have enjoyed 
a goodly heritage. The feeble have become strong, 
and the weak have become mighty ! And now, as 
indicated by their increasing prosperity and enlarge- 
ment, thou hast put it into the hearts of this people 
to rear upon this spot another edifice, for their better 
accommodation in the discharge of the official duties 
of those who are called by the city's voice to places 
of trust and responsibility, as the public servants. 


Let the walls of the building rise upon this founda- 
tion-stone, under thy fostering care. And if it please 
thee, Father, let those who arc engaged in its erection, 
be preserved in health and free from all accident and 
harm, even till the cap-stone shall crown it, amid shout- 
ings of joy, and the structure stands an ornament and 
an honor to the city. 

And here, Great God ! let the building remain under 
the blessed icgis of our free institutions, to subserve the 
public interests undisturbed, ever to coming generations. 
In the midst of the mutations of time, and the changes 
of circumstance, let thy blessing, we pray thee, rest 
upon this goodly. city, for its olden memories and its 
present devotion ; upon all its interests, civil, religious, 
artisan, commercial, and educational, and may the influ- 
ence of each and all tend to public good. 

Bless, O God, bless abundantly the civil government 
of this city in its present and future labors ! Give thy 
rich blessing to the retiring and to the incoming Chief 
Magistrate thereof; the outgoing, give the blessing 
which belongs to him, for the exceeding faithfulness 
and devotion with which his many and arduous duties 
have been performed ; and the incoming, inspire with 
like faithfulness and devotion to duty, which is the 
greatest blessing Ave can crave for his official labors. 
Let all who are or may be associated with them, receive 
the blessing of thine approval upon their work, and let 
them thus be strengthened and stimulated to still more 
earnest labors for the common good ! 

Bless, we beseech thee, our ancient and glorious 
Commonwealth. May thy grace be imparted very 


largely to its Chief Magistrate, and all who are associ- 
ated with him in framing or administering the laws. 
Let fidelity to the common good characterize all their 
lahors, and so let them, — and the people through them, 
— receive constant favor from thy hand ! 

But while we are here, Great God ! in the midst of 
the hum of industry, and the signs of prosperity all 
around us, for the discharge of a pleasing duty, let us 
not forget, we pray thee, our dear country, under thy 
grace the fountain of all our blessings, now torn and 
distracted by civil discord and strife. Man's folly, 
ingratitude, and wickedness stand darkly against the 
prospering smile of God! Madness rides upon the 
wings of the hour, and peril lurks in all our ways ! 
Under the fearful cloud that has fallen around us, and 
amidst the fiery tempest of war that hurtles through 
the land, thou alone canst be our helper ! Thou alone 
art our hope ! Oh, stretch over our land the arm of 
thine Almighty power ! Lift over our bleeding country 
the availing shield of thy protection and care ! As 
thou wast with the fathers in the day of their need, be 
now the gracious helper of their sons. 

Let thy hand roll away the cloud that darkens our 
political heavens, and thy spirit breathe speedy peace 
through all our borders ! To this end bless the Presi- 
dent of the United States, and all who are associated 
with him in our National Government, and councils. 
Give them very largely of thy wisdom, and prudence to 
guide and direct the affairs of State in this momentous 
crisis which we are called to meet ; that the Union 
and Harmony of the States may be restored ; the 


glorious Constitution from our fathers exert its mild 
and equal sway over all, unweakened, unimpaired, and 
our dear country still hold on, and forever, her way of 
advancing greatness and glory, under the benediction 
of our God, — the pride of our hearts, and the hope of 
the nations of the earth ! Let rebellion, and faction, 
and discord cease from our midst, and enable us now 
and henceforth to act as in some degree grateful for 
the unspeakable blessings thou hast conferred upon us, 
moving under the hallowed beamings of the Eeligion 
of Jesus, toward the degree of perfectibility we may 
attain ! 

O God our Father! remember in thy tender mercy 
the thousands of our youth who have gone out from 
their happy homes to endure the privations of the 
camp and to meet the perils of the battle-field, in con- 
tending for the preservation of the constitution, laws, 
institutions, and homes of our land ! Hold over them 
the shield of thy protection, and be thou their helper in 
every emergency they are called to meet ; and restore 
them speedily, we pray thee, under the mild beamings 
of returning peace, to the homes and hearts that arc 
waiting for them ! 

Bless., O God, as thou alone hast the power to bless, 
the desolated homes, and the thousands of bleeding 
hearts that have been, or may be called to make the 
terrible sacrifice of yielding up their loved ones on the 
bloody altar of this fearful strife ! Tenderly compas- 
sionate their condition, and help them to bear all bur- 
dens, still trusting in thee for that issue, which shall 
yet come, in which thy ways shall be vindicated, and 



all their sorrows be turned into joy, through him that 
bindeth up the broken-hearted ! 

And now, blessed Father, we again invoke thy favor 
on the occasion which has gathered us. Regard, in thy 
great kindness, the work which is here performed. 
Graciously smile upon this Grand Lodge of our order. 
May its officers guide in the spirit of wisdom and 
brotherly love. May its subordinates, and our whole 
fraternity throughout the globe, receive that blessing 
from thee which shall make them an instrument in thy 
hand for the promotion of the excellent graces and 
kindly amenities of life among men, and so let thy 
great name be glorified in all our borders ! 

Let this building rise in its beauty and grandeur to 
its completion. Let the light of Christian Truth be 
spread, and be borne to the hearts of the children of 
men everywhere, until all mankind shall be baptized 
into its holy spirit, and turned from all error into all 
needed truth ; — until at the name of Jesus every knee 
shall bow and every tongue confess that he is Lord to 
the glory of God the Father ! 

Lead us in the way in which thou wouldst have us to 
go, through all time, and when our brief pilgrimage of 
mortality is ended, in forgiveness of all our sins, bring 
us, and in thine own good time, all thy children home 
to the great temple of immortal light and love, to go no 
more out forever and forever, and through Jesus, our 
constituted Redeemer, accept our praises evermore. 


After appropriate music by the band, C. C. Uamc, 
Grand Treasurer, read the description of the contents 
of the box, which was then placed in the receptacle 
prepared for it, and the corner-stone lowered into its 
place in the southeast corner of the building. The 11. 
W. Deputy Grand Master and Senior and Junior Grand 
Wardens applied the proper jewels of their office, the 
square, the level and the plumb, and each declared that 
the craftsmen had done their duty. The Grand Master 
then striking three times upon the stone with his gavel, 
said, " I find this foundation-stone well laid, true and 
trusty, and in conformity with the plan, in peace, love, 
and harmony." 

Deputy Grand Master, Marshall P. Wilder, then 
poured corn upon the stone from a golden cornucopia, 
saying, " May the health of the workmen employed in 
this undertaking be preserved to them, and may the 
Supreme Grand Architect bless and prosper their 
labors." Senior Grand Warden, Winslow Lewis, 
next poured wine from a silver vase upon the stone, 
saying, " May plenty be showered down upon the 
people, and may the blessing of the bounteous Giver 
of all good rest upon this place." The Junior 
Grand Warden, Peter C. Jones, followed by pouring- 
oil upon the stone with a similar benediction. The 
Grand Master then said : " May corn, wine, and oil, 
and all the necessaries of life abound among this 
people, and may the blessing of Almighty God be 
upon this undertaking, and may the workmen be 
blessed while engaged on it, and may the structure 
here to be erected be preserved to the latest ages, 


and may it promote the object for which it is designed." 
The audience then joined in singing Old Hundred, after 
which the Grand Master addressed the Mayor and City 
Government as follows : 

address of grand master w. d. coolidge. 

Mr. Mayor and Gentlemen of the City Council: 
In compliance with your invitation, and in conformity 
to ancient masonic usage, we have now laid the corner- 
stone of this new City Hall, and I have pronounced 
the foundation-stone well laid, true and trusty. Under 
your special care, and that of your successors, let this 
edifice arise in all its magnificent proportions to be 
an ornament to the city and a convenience to the 
members of its government, and the pride and honor 
of her citizens. 

On this twenty-second day of December our minds 
naturally go back to the time when our forefathers 
landed at Plymouth. This beautiful structure is an 
evidence of the consummate skill and ability of our 
architects and builders. Let it rise in its architectural 
beauty to be in the sight of this people a joy forever. 

The Mayor then continued his Address, as follows : 

Most Worshipful Grand Master: I thank you and 
the Most Worthy officers of the Grand Lodge of 
Masons, for the valuable and interesting services you 
have performed on this occasion. The invitation you so 
kindly accepted was tendered from a profound respect 


for your ancient and honored institution, and I trust 
that hereafter, when this building shall be completed 
and become the pride of our city, your participation 
in the laying of this corner-stone will be regarded by 
you with pleasure and satisfaction. 

Mr. Chairman and Gentlemen of the Committee 
on Public Buildings : Having thus performed a duty 
most gratifying to me, both personally and officially, I 
am happy to know that so many of the members of the 
Committee are to remain in the City Council during the 
ensuing year, and I have reason to believe that we may 
safely intrust to them, and to our successors, the com- 
pletion of a work which has been this day so happily 
inaugurated. And, Mr. Chairman, permit me to express 
my sincere regret that you, to whom the city is so much 
indebted for the consummation of this great public 
improvement, are not to have any official supervision 
over its erection, but — as these stones arc placed one 
upon the other, and as the beautiful design of the archi- 
tect is developed ; as its walls and columns and cor- 
nices arc finished — let it be your satisfaction, as it will 
be mine, to feel that our humble efforts were instru- 
mental in adorning our loved city with an edifice so 
graceful in its architectural proportions, and so per- 
fectly adapted to the present and future wants of the 
government. And if now our hearts are saddened at 
the present gloomy condition of our country, let us still 
cherish the hope that when these walls shall be crowned 
with its towering dome, we may see from the flagstaff 
upon its summit the glorious flag of our nation waving 


over it as the emblem of a restored and reunited 

The band then played the " Star-Spangled Banner," 
and the ceremonies were concluded with a benediction 
by the Kev. Mr. Greenwood. 



The box is made of sheet-copper, tinned inside and 
outside, and is thirteen inches square by four inches 
in height. In this box the annexed list of articles 
are enclosed : 

1. A silver plate, measuring ton and three-fourths inelies by 
seven and three-fourths inches, upon which the following is 
engraved : 



<!i> jo v n 1 n mm t of the (!Hty ot Boston, 

Wu& laid on the 2'2d day of December, 18G2, 



Assisted by the 

M. W. William D. Coolidge, G. Master. 

Thomas P. Ricn, 
Thomas C. Amory, Jr., 
James L. Hanson, 
Samuel R. Spinney, 
George W. Pak.menter 
John F. Pray, 

City Government for IS 6 2. 




Elisiia T. Wilson, 
Francis Richards, 
Joseph L. Henshaw, 
Joseph P. Paul, 
Calvin A. Richards, 
Otis Norcross. 



Common Council. 
JOSHUA D. BALL, President. 

John- W. Leighton, 
Cornelius Murphy, 
Dennis Bonner, 
Matthew Keany, 
Albert Bowker, 


George Hesmajj, 
Augustus Reed, 
John C. Tuckei;, 
Philip O'Donnell, 
Bernard Cullen, 
John Glancy, 
Seldon Crockett, 
Elias E. Davison, 
Benjamin F. Edmands, 
Daniel H. Whitney, 
John S. Pear, 
Joseph A. Brown, 
Linus M. Child, 
Michael F. Wells, 
Daniel Davies, 
William E. Bicknell, 
George P. Clapp, 
George 0. Shattuck, 

Jabez Frederick, 
Charles J. McCarthy, 
James Riley, 
Henry W. Foley, 
JosEPn Buckley, 
John S. Tyler, 
Morris C. Fitch, 
Winsor Hatch, 2d, 
William Carpenter, 
Franklin H. Sprague, 
Samuel G. Bowdlear, 
William H. Ireland, 
Joel Richards, 
Loring B. Barnes, 
Cyrus Hicks, 
Horace B. Fisher, 
William B. Fowle, Jr., 
Joshua D. Ball, 
John C Fallon, 
Lucius A. Cutler, 
Sumner Crosby', 
George W. Sprague, 
Henry A. Drake, 
Stanley Gore. 

Committee on Public Buildings. 

Francis Richards, 
Samuel R. Spinney, 
Joseph F. Paul, 
Dandsl Davies, 

John C Tucker, 
John W. Leighton, 
John C. Fallon, 
George W. Sprague. 

Grtjdley J. F. Bryant and Arthur Gilman, Architects. 

Samuel C. Nottage, Superintendent of Public Buildings. 

Samuel F. McCleary, Ciin Cleric. 

D. Bhiscoe, Engraver. 

2. Message of the President of the United States to Congress, 
December, 1862. 

3. Reports of the Secretaries of the Treasury, of War, Navy, 
and Interior, 1862. 

4. Massachusetts Register, 1862. 


,5. City Charter and City Ordinances. 

6. Boston Municipal Register for 1862. 

7. Map of the City of Boston, revised lo 1861. 

8. Inaugural Address of the Mayor, January 6, 1862. 

9. Report of the Committee on new City Hall, 18G2. 

10. Report of Committee on Boston Volunteers, 1802. 

1 1. Annual Report of Boston Board of Trade, 1802. 

12. Two Semi-Aunual Reports of the Superintendent of Schools, 


13. Annual Report of the Trustees of the Public Library, 1862. 
11. Annual Report of the Chief of Police, 1862. 

lo. Annual Report of the City Auditor, 1862. 
1G. Oration before the City Authorities, July ■!, 18G2, by Hon. 
George T. Curtis. 

17. Boston Almanac, 1862. 

18. Boston newspapers, December 20, 1862. 

19. A sealed glass bottle, containing two United States Treasury 
Notes of the denominations of one and two dollars ; Postal Cur- 
rency of fifty, twenty-five, ten, and five cents ; also a Treasury 
Note of the " Confederate States of America," of the denomination 
of twenty dollars, a United States Cent of 1862, and an impres- 
sion from the City Seal. 

20. A photographic outline View of the new City Hall. 

The box containing the foregoing articles is hermeti- 
cally sealed, and then put inside another copper box 
fifteen inches square and six inches high, which is also 
closed hermetically, after filling the space between the 
two boxes with dry pulverized charcoal. The cavity in 
the stone which received the box, is eighteen inches 
square and eight inches high. 




At the commencement of the year 1863, Mayor 
Wightman, to whose zeal and industry (ably seconded 
by the efforts of Alderman Francis Richards, Chairman 
of the Committee of Public Buildings, and Councilman 
Daniel Davies,) the city had been mainly indebted 
for bringing this long vexed question to a successful 
close, retired from office, and was succeeded by Honor- 
able Frederic W. Lincoln, Jr. The inaugural address 
of the new incumbent contained the following reference 
to the work : 

" One of the most impressive circumstances of the 
services of to-day is the fact that probably this is the 
last city government that will be organized within 
these walls. The multiplied municipal interests of our 
growing city has demanded for some years greater 
accommodations for its public offices than the present 
building affords. The expediency of erecting, in this 
time of war, a new building, has not been left for us to 
decide, but has been determined by our predecessors. 
Plans have been drawn, contracts have partially been 
made, and, in fact, a building has actually been com- 
menced to take its place. It is our duty in good faith 
to carry out what has been left unfinished by others ; 
but if we have " entered into their labors," it should 
be with a clear understanding of what they proposed 
to do, and the means which they have appropriated 
toward its end. 

Tn examining the order for the erection of the build- 

mayor Lincoln's address. 67 

ing, I find that the committee arc directed " to erect 
a City Hall, at a cost not exceeding the sum of one 
hundred and sixty thousand dollars." That a building 
can he erected for such a sum, I have my doubts ; and 
I am confirmed in this belief by the contracts already 
made. These only include granite, masonry, carpentry, 
iron-work, and taking down the old building, and 
amount to $144,300. 

Plastering, copper-work, carving, plumbing, heating 
apparatus, painting, glazing, marble-work, gas-fixtures, 
fitting up offices, services of architects, and furniture, 
have not been contracted for, and have been estimated 
by competent judges at $123,800. This sum, added 
to 144,300, makes a total of 268,100, which must 
approximate toward the real cost of the work. To 
this may be fairly added the cost of removal, and rents 
which the city will have to pay while rebuilding, 
amounting to ten or twelve thousand dollars. I have 
deemed it my duty to bring this subject to your early 
consideration, so that we may definitely know, at the 
outset, the cost of the edifice, and not be subject to 
the continual annoyance of new loans to carry on or 
complete the work." 

The above portion of the Mayor's address was 
referred to the Committee on Public Buildings for 
their consideration, and on the 30th of March, they 
made the following 


The Committee on Public Buildings, to whom was 
referred so much of the Mayor's address as related to 


the cost of finishing the new City Hall, have consid- 
ered the same, and submit the following report : 

During the year 1862 contracts were made for the 
hammered stone, the mason's work and carpenter's 
work, which amounted, in the aggregate, to about 
$150,000, which, being deducted from the original 
appropriation, left a balance of $10,000. The Com- 
mittee have given the plans a careful examination to 
satisfy themselves as to whether any changes from the 
original plan are necessary, or expedient, to render the 
building more substantial and desirable and better 
adapted to the purposes for which it is designed ; and 
after many meetings and much consultation they are 
unanimously in favor of making the following changes, 
the advantages and cost of which they respectfully pre- 
sent. 1. To place all the apparatus for heating the 
entire building, and the fuel for the same, in a cellar 
occupying the central portion of the North or Court 
Square front, thus leaving the entire basement for 
offices and for such other purposes as it may be appro- 
priated to, and removing all the dirt and dust and 
other objectionable features of the heating department 
entirely out of view. 2. To make all the floors, from 
the basement to the third story inclusive, of brick and 
iron, thus rendering the building nearly fire-proof in 
the principal stories, and giving it a character of 
security and permanency in keeping with its objects. 
The cost of excavating and building a cellar as recom- 
mended will be as per estimates, including an iron and 
brick floor, $7006.00. The cost of making the other 


three principal floors entirely of iron and brick will be 
as per estimates $26,000. The whole cost of effecting 
the changes of the original plan recommended by the 
Committee will thus be $33,006. There remain to be 
contracted for, to complete the building, the plastering, 
plumbing, painting and glazing, stairs, roof covering, 
copper gutters, heating apparatus, marble and filing, 
safes and iron cases, gas fitting, ventilators, and other 
items, all of which have been carefully calculated at 
such prices as prevail at this time, but many will not 
be needed for at least one year. The Committee are 
of opinion that it is for the interest of the city to defer 
contracting for those matters which will not soon be 
required ; but, as much of the work should be contracted 
for at once, and as it is necessary that the contractors 
for the masonry and carpentry should be early informed 
of any changes that are to be made, the Committee 
respectfully request such an addition to the appropria- 
tion as will furnish them with the means to carry out 
the changes recommended, and to execute the addi- 
tional contracts which ought to be made the present 
year. They therefore ask the passage of the accom- 
panying order. 


Committee on Public Buildings. 


Ordered : That the Treasurer be, and he hereby is authorized 
to borrow, under the direction of the Committee on Finance, the 
sum of one hundred and forty thousand dollars, the same to be 
added to the appropriation for a new City Hall. 

The order was passed unanimously by both brandies 
of the City Council. 

On the 1st of March. 1865 — the work meanwhile 
having progressed with great thoroughness and care 
under the direction of Alderman Davies, Chairman of 
the Committee on Public Buildings during this and 
the previous year — an additional appropriation of one 
hundred thousand dollars was asked for to defray the 
expenses of completing the Hall. The request was 

On the 27th of March, 1865, the following order was 
passed by the City Council and approved by the Mayor : 

Ordered: That the Committee on Public Buildings be, and 
they are hereby ordered to report to the City Council the amount 
of money that will be required to finish the City Hall, and when 
the same will be completed and ready for occupancy. 

In compliance with the above order, the Committee 
on the 3d of April, 1865, made the following 


The Committee on Public Buildings who were ordered 
to report to the City Council the amount of money that 
will be required to finish the City Hall, and when the 
same will be completed and ready for occupancy, have 
considered the subject, and respectfully report, that it is 


the opinion of the Committee that the amount asked for 
by them, viz., one hundred thousand dollars, will be 
sufficient to finish the building, including- tbe fencing 
and grading, and a part of the furniture ; but that it is 
difficult to make at this time an accurate estimate of the 
cost of furnishing. The Committee believe, however, 
that another appropriation of twenty-five thousand dol- 
lars will be sufficient to furnish the building complete. 
Some of the rooms will be occupied by the first day of 
July next, and the whole building will be completed 
and ready for occupancy by middle of September next. 

daniel davies, 
l. miles standish, 
geo. w. sprague, 
nathaniel adams, 
william w. warren, 


< 'ommiUee on Public Bulldliujx. 

The report was accepted. 

The following order was approved by the Mayor, 
July 14, 1865 : 

Ordered: That the Committee on Public Buildings, under the 
direction of his Honor the Mayor, be directed to make all neces- 
sary arrangements for the dedication of the City Hall, during the 
present municipal year, and that the expense attending the same 
be charged to the appropriation for the City Hall. 


Iii conformity with the foregoing order the Committee 
on Public Buildings, with the advice of the Mayor, 
appointed the 18th of Sept. (the 17th being Sunday), 
for the dedication of the building. 

On the eleventh of September, 1865, it was ordered 
by the Board of Aldermen, " That a message be sent to 
the Common Council proposing that a Convention of 
the two branches of the City Council be held at the Com- 
mon Council Chamber, in the new City Hall, in School 
Street, on Monday, the eighteenth instant, at 12 o'clock, 
M., for the purpose of celebrating, with appropriate 
ceremonies, the completion of the new building." 

The formalities for the dedication of the new build- 
ing, which took place on the 18th September, 18b'5, 
were as follows : 



On Monday, September 18* 1865, at 12 o'clock, M., 
a joint convention of both branches of the City Council 
was held in the Council Chamber, at the new City Hall, 
for the purpose of dedicating the building to the use of 
the city government of Boston. Upon taking the chair, 
his Honor the Mayor stated the object of the meeting, 
and called upon Alderman Daniel Davics, the Chairman 
of the Committee on Public Buildings, who had charge 
of the work, to proceed in discharge of his official duty. 

Alderman Davies then came forward and made the 
following remarks : 

Mr. Mayor : It becomes my duty, as Chairman of 
the Committee on Public Buildings, to surrender to you, 
the chief executive officer of this city, this building, 
which has been erected by the direction of the City 
Council for the purpose of a City Hall. 

On the first day of July, 1862, the orders were 
received by the Committee, directing them to erect suit- 
able buildings for a City Hall. During the fall and 

* The seventeenth of September, the anniversary of the foundation of 
Boston, occurred on Sunday, and the services were postponed, therefore, 
until the next day. 


winter of 1862, the contracts were made for tlie excava- 
tion, the stone- work, masonry, and carpentry. A portion 
of the foundation being ready on the twenty-second day 
of December, the corner-stone was laid, which finished 
the work for that year. Early the next spring, the 
work was recommenced, and it has been constantly 
prosecuted to the present time. As a full description, 
with plans of the budding and grounds, the names of 
the contractors, and portions of work performed by 
each, and the expense of the work, will soon be printed 
in detail, it is unnecessary to give them at this time. 

Although considerable work yet remains to be done, 
it was thought best by the Committee that the building- 
should be formally dedicated on this day, — the anni- 
versary of the foundation of the town of Boston. 

And now, Mr. Mayor, under the direction and in 
behalf of the Committee on Public Buildings, I surren- 
der to your charge this building, and deliver to you this 
key, which controls its entrance. 

To these remarks the Mayor responded as follows : 

Mr. Chairman : As the representative of the Execu- 
tive Government of Boston, it is my duty, as well as 
my privilege, to receive from your hands this key, as a 
formal delivery of this beautiful edifice. The peculiar 
felicity of the Committee on Public Buildings is, that then- 
work appears in tangible form ; it is not placed upon 
file, or bound up with the City Documents, but appears 
in our public streets, and whdc ministering to the wants 
of the people, gratifies the taste and embellishes and 


ornaments the city. The degree of opulence and wealth 
which a community has attained is indicated by the 
character of its public buildings ; and although the 
useful purposes to which they are devoted are of 
more vital consequence than then mere form, yet the 
harmonious combination of the practical with the beau- 
tiful carries with it a higher illustration of the culture 
and refinement of the people. It has been your pri- 
vilege, together with that of your associates, in addition 
to the usual work committed to your charge, — such as 
the building of public stables and engine houses, police 
stations, hospitals, and school-houses, — to be called 
upon to superintend the erection of this crowning glory 
of municipal architecture, — an edifice wisely adapted 
to the official and business purposes of the government, 
and also an expressive and imposing structure, typify- 
ing by its costly and elaborate embellishments the dig- 
nity and relative rank of our city. It is a subject of 
just pride to our citizens that within a few years there 
has been a marked change in the outward appearance 
and style of all classes of our buildings. The stranger, 
who from time to time visits our metropolis, must be 
impressed with the architectural progress which has 
been made in the character of our private dwellings, 
as well as those devoted to science and art, and to the 
worship of Almighty God. 

While public-spirited individuals have united their 
means for the erection of many elegant structures 
appropriated to the institutions which bless our people, 
the city itself, through its municipal authorities, has not 
been negligent of its duty in this respect. 



Whatever difference of opinion may have existed as 
to the expediency of erecting a new City Hall at a time 
when the dark cloncl of civil war was hanging over the 
country, yet its completion is celebrated when the bright 
beams of peace are cheering the hearts of the people. 
As the work on the magnificent Capitol at Washington, 
in which the National Council holds its sessions, still 
resolutely went on during the dark period, so we, with 
an unfaltering faith in the success of the country's cause, 
abated not one jot or tittle in our original design. The 
inflation of the currency and other circumstances may 
have swelled the figures on our Treasurer's books, but 
we believe we have presented to our constituents a 
building worth all it has cost. 

For the patient assiduity and skilful manner in which 
you, Mr. Chairman, and your associates of the Commit- 
tee, have discharged the special duties incumbent on 
your official position, I have no doubt you will receive 
the thanks of our citizens. This building will long 
remain a memorial of your devotion to the public ser- 
vice, and a monument to the taste of the architects who 
designed, and the faithful Boston mechanics who have 
been engaged in its erection. 

As the organ of the city government, I cheerfully 
receive it from your hands, with sincere congratulations 
on the near approach of the consummation of your 
labors hi its behalf. 

Rev. Chandler Eobbins, D. D., pastor of the Second 
Church, offered the following 



Almighty and most merciful God, our Father which 
art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name ! We would 
come together for the first time into these goodly halls 
with devout acknowledgments of Thy glory and Thy 
goodness, and of our dependence and obligations. 

We adore Thee as the Architect and Owner of the 
heavens, and the earth, and all things which they 
contain. Remembering that " except the Lord build 
the house, they labor in vain that build it," we would 
thank Thee that Thy providence lias worked together 
with those whose skill and strength have reared this 
edifice ; that while stone has been laid upon stone and 
beam upon beam, no hostile power has marred the 
work or destroyed the workmen. We thank thee that 
by Thy favor it stands complete, and that the various 
officers of our municipal government are permitted, 
under such auspicious circumstances, to take possession 
of its ample and commodious apartments, and to dedi- 
cate them to their public uses. May they come into 
its unpolluted walls with clean hands and pure hearts, 
with new purposes of fidelity, and new interest hi all 
that concerns the welfare of our city and its inhabitants. 

Wc thank Thee for all the historic recollections, 
both of civic and national interest, which this occasion 
revives. We thank Thee that Thou didst lead our pil- 
grim ancestors across the ocean, and guard and guide 
them, while with toils and prayers they laid the founda- 
tion of this city, and of a new empire in the west. We 
thank Thee for their faith and their piety, then - patience 
and then - trust, their love of liberty and respect for 


law, their fidelity to conscience, their political wisdom 
and their practical energy, for all those qualities which 
fitted them for the successful performance of the work 
which Thy providence laid upon them, and the fruits 
of which we are this clay enjoying. We thank Thee 
for all and each of those wise and faithful men, in the 
long line of then successors, who, in their respective 
generations, have contributed in any Avay to promote 
the true prosperity and establish the fair fame of Bos- 
ton. The whole history of our city is one continued 
record of Thy favors. May we not be ungrateful. 
May we not be unworthy of such a past. May we not 
be forgetful of the hand that has built us up and the 
mercy that has blessed lis. Let us emulate the virtues 
and public spirit of our fathers, and not through pride 
and impiety fall away from honoring and serving our 
fathers' God. 

As our thoughts revert on this anniversary to the 
adoption of that Constitution which formed the basis of 
our national union, we would with one accord offer our 
thanksgivings and supplications hi behalf of our coun- 
try. We would remember with gratitude how Thou 
didst watch over the infant Republic, and protect it 
from foreign enemies ; how Thou didst enlarge its bor- 
ders and increase its greatness ; how Thou didst nour- 
ish and defend it till it took its place among the leading- 
nations of the earth ; and when, in these latter years, 
intestine discord threatened its destruction, how Thy 
Eight Hand and Thine Arm saved and delivered us. 
We thank Thee, O gracious Lord, that Thou hast 
brought us out of all the horrors and miseries of a 
fratricidal war, and art cheering and comforting us with 


the blessings of reviving peace. Oh, grant, we beseech 
Thee, that it may be a righteous and permanent peace. 
As we lay aside the weapons of warfare, dispose and 
help us to put away from us forever those lusts and 
iniquities which were the cause of the war, and which 
would be a perpetual source of future discord and 
calamity. Taught by the bitter discipline through 
which we have passed, may we become a wise, just, 
and Christian people. 

Bless, we entreat Thee, the President of the United 
States. Enlighten his mind, that he may discern what 
is for the true interest of the Republic. Enlarge and 
purify his heart, that he may be both liberal and just. 
Strengthen his hands, that he may firmly execute the 
laws and vigorously carry into effect wise and equitable 
measures for the reconciliation and reconstruction of 
our disordered nation. Endue the members of his Cab- 
inet, and all who are connected with the administration 
of the National Government with understanding and 
virtue. Discarding selfish ambition and party preju- 
dice, may they work together faithfully and successfully, 
with one mind, and in the fear of God, for their coun- 
try's good. 

And now, O God, we would humbly and fervently 
commend to Thy continued protection and favor our 
beloved city ; its Chief Magistrate, and all the members 
of its government, and all who are associated with its 
service ; its institutions of learning, science, charity, 
justice, and religion ; the interests of its trade, com- 
merce and industry, and all the instruments and ele- 
ments of its prosperity. Save it from those things 
which divide, corrupt, and disgrace a people ; save it 



from luxury, intemperance, faction, infidelity, and every 
form of vice and ungodliness. May it be the home of 
order, concord, health, intelligence, and humanity ; of 
all the virtues which ennoble, the arts which adorn and 
refine, and the Christian faith and piety which exalt a 

Let this edifice, dedicated and set apart to municipal 
services and duties, be a centre of good and salutary 
influences. Here may men of integrity, discretion, and 
practical ability, consult harmoniously, legislate wisely, 
and act impartially, for the public good. May it stand 
for many years a tower of defence as well as an orna- 
ment. As it shall become venerable from age, may it 
become more and more venerable from association with 
the worthy names and faithful services of those who 
shall have occupied it. And, long after its walls shall 
have crumbled, may the spot on which it stands be sur- 
rounded by the abodes of a prosperous and Christian 

O God, in Thy great mercy, accept these our thanks- 
givings and prayers, forgive and cleanse us from our 
sins, and help us to live to Thy glory. May all the 
kingdoms and inhabitants of the world be blessed with 
the knowledge of Thy truth and the experience of Thy 
saving health. Give to Thy dear son Jesus Christ, our 
Lord, the sceptre of the nations, that he may reign over 
them in righteousness and peace. In him may our 
prayers be heard, our offerings be accepted and our 
works blessed, and through him we will render unto 
Thee all praise and glory forever. Amen. 

The Mayor then delivered the following address : 



Gentlemen of the City Council, and Fellow-Citi- 
zens : We are assembled on an occasion which will 
hereafter mark an important era in the municipal his- 
tory of Boston. We have met this day to dedicate, 
with appropriate ceremonies, a new building to be 
devoted to the local administration of the affairs of this 
city. On this two hundred and thirty-fifth anniversary 
of its civic birth, our minds are naturally and fondly 
carried back through the stirring events of these many 
years. The long procession of noble men, who have 
given it a name and character, again passes on the stage 
before us. We watch with intense interest the move- 
ments of the fathers of the town, who, self-exiled from 
the land of their birth and the sepulchres of their 
ancestors, landed upon these shores, and, building a 
home for themselves and their little ones, laid the 
foundations of a city which should be known and 
honored through many generations. We would bow 
in reverence to the motives which led them to form 
this infant settlement. They were not mere adventu- 
rers, — the cast-off mendicants from the Old World; 
many of them were men of culture and education; 


some with a fair share of worldly goods, all of an incor- 
ruptible integrity; yet they left the conveniences and. 
comforts of their native land to found, upon the barren 
strand of a New World, a state where the privileges of 
civil and religious liberty, of which they had been 
deprived by arbitrary power, might be enjoyed by them- 
selves and their posterity. The success which crowned 
then efforts is illustrated in every page of our annals, 
and is to be seen in our present condition and prosperity. 
Boston, the capital of Massachusetts Bay, through all 
its colonial and provincial existence, affords one of the 
best examples of the steady development and progress 
of civil freedom, culminating in the revolutionary era, 
when the sister colonies, espousing her cause, united in 
the Declaration of Independence, thus establishing the 
Republic of the United States, and introducing a new 
people into the family of nations. 

Our local history commences with September seventh, 
old style, or September seventeenth, new style, 1630, 
when the Court of Assistants of Massachusetts Bay, 
then sitting at Charlestown, acting under a charter 
granted by Charles the First, ordered that this peninsula, 
which had heretofore been called Shawmut and Tri- 
mountain, should take the name of Boston. Such were 
the peculiar associations connected with Boston in Eng- 
land, that the leaders in the enterprise had resolved, 
previous to embarking from their homes, that the chief 
town should be called by this name. Boston had been 
famous in the annals of the persecuted Puritans ; a large 
portion of the company belonged to that city and the 
county of Lincoln, in which it is situated; and it is said 


that the name was also considered as a compliment 

to the Rev. John Cotton, a distinguished clergyman of 
that place, who united his fame and fortune with them, 
and afterwards hecame the pastor of the First Church in 
the new settlement. 

It was thus early decided, on account of its natural 
advantages, to he the capital of the colony. There 
were other places which had hceii settled previously, 
which had a claim to the distinction, such as Salem, 
Dorchester, Charlestown, and Cambridge, but its rapid 
growth and prosperity soon justified the wisdom of the 
selection. It was designed for a commercial town, was 
limited in extent, and was sometimes designated " Black- 
stone's Neck," after the first settler. Its greatest wants 
were wood and meadow land, so that those of the 
people " who lived upon then cattle " took farms in the 
adjoining country, which were granted to them for the 
purpose. It was feared by many that it would be no 
place for continued habitation, for want of a staple 
commodity; but, as early as 1647, her interests had 
become diversified ; she not only raised from the earth 
and the sea enough for all her inhabitants, but had a 
large commerce with Virginia, Barbadoes, and the 
Summer Islands ; with France, Spam, Portugal, and 
even with England. 

Johnson says, in speaking of the colony of Massa- 
chusetts Bay, that " the maritime towns began to increase 
roundly, especially Boston, the which of a poor country 
village, in twice seven years it became like unto a small 
city, and is hi election to be Mayor Town suddenly, 
chiefly increased by trade by sea." He also says, at an 



earlier date, that " it is the centre town and the metrop- 
olis of this wilderness work, and its continual enlarge- 
ment presages some sumptuous city." 

There is no clear account of the commencement of 
our municipal government. The records in the possession 
of our City Clerk do not give any light on the subject. 
The affairs of the colony and the town were so connected, 
as it was the seat of government, that probably at first 
the Governor and Assistants, the majority being inhab- 
itants of the town, exercised all the powers that were 
necessary. Sometimes there appear upon the records, 
" Overseers of the Town's Concerns, " or " persons 
chosen for the occasion of the town." But in 1645 a 
regular. Board of Selectmen was chosen, John Winthrop, 
that year acting as Deputy Governor of the Colony, 
being Chairman, and James Perm, one of their number, 
Recorder and Treasurer. As the town increased in 
population and wealth, frequent attempts were made by 
a portion of the inhabitants to secure for it the name 
and privileges of a city. As early as 1651 the subject 
was agitated; again in 1708, in 1762, in 1784, in 1815, 
and finally with success in 1822. The whole number 
of votes cast was four thousand eight hunched and 
eleven ; the number in favor of the city government 
was two thousand eight hundred and five ; the number 
against the project was two thousand and six. A 
charter was obtained from the Legislature, which received 
the signature of Governor Brooks, February 23, 1S22, 
and was accepted by the people on the following fourth 
of March. The new government was organized at 
Faneuil Hall on the first of May, the Chairman of the 


Selectmen, Eliphalet Williams, in an appropriate speech, 
transferring the powers of the old town organization 
to the Mayor, John Phillips, who delivered an inaugural 
address, — the oath of office being administered by 
Chief Justice Parker, and a, prayer offered by the Rev. 
Dr. Baldwin, the senior clergyman of the town. 

No single thing affords a better illustration of the 
character of the people of Boston than their long con- 
tinued love for a democratic form of municipal organiza- 
tion. It was only when the population became so large 
that then- interests suffered materially by the old customs, 
that they would consent to delegate the powers of the 
local government to a limited number of their own fel- 
low-citizens. A watchful and jealous scrutiny of the 
conduct of their official servants is still a marked 
characteristic of Boston, and woe will befall our city 
when the great body of her citizens cease to take an 
interest in her public affairs. 

You will not expect me, gentlemen, on an occasion 
like the present, to deliver an historical discourse upon 
so inspiring a theme as the annals of Boston, tempting 
though it be. I have alluded to the commencement of 
our town, because the associations connected with this 
anniversary required it, and in order that we may be 
reminded of the days of small things, and of the great 
contrast between the distant past, and the present of 
which we form a part. To the student of history, I 
verily believe there is no more interesting study to be 
found, than the record of the events which have made 
Boston what she is to-day. He will find that she has 
had a healthy and well-developed progress in everything 


•which promotes the welfare of civilized man, — the 
cause of religion and morals, education and science, 
commerce and industry, good order and social happiness. 
While the machinery of town government, based upon 
the example of the mother country, was followed so far 
as it suited her condition, yet better methods and addi- 
tional institutions were organized, more wisely adapted 
to the character and prospective wants of the people. 

The stirring events which made her name famous in 
the revolutionary era have somewhat overshadowed her 
earlier history ; but I contend that her career has been 
brilliant from the first ; and her intrepid stand against the 
encroachments of arbitrary power at that time was but 
the natural consequence of that education and discipline 
which her people had been receiving for a century and 
a half in the defence of their colonial and provincial 
rights. There is not a more pregnant page in the 
records of the progress of mankind towards civil liberty 
than the part which our town took in that long struggle, 
in which she was finally defeated, when the original 
charter of Massachusetts Bay was taken from the col- 
ony, and it became a province of the King. Then com- 
menced a new era in her history, apparently dark, but 
gradually lighting up as she successively combated and 
defied the several British governors, who, representing 
the prerogatives of the Crown, claimed her slavish alle- 
giance, until she had the happiness of seeing the last of 
the loyal line forced to take his departure from the 
town, and sail down the waters of our beautiful bay 
with his mercenary troops, never more to return. The 
events of the revolutionary period arc as familiar to us 


as " household words." As Boston was the theatre 
where its great principles were earliest discussed and 
promulgated, so was its vicinity the scene of some of its 
most important engagements when an appeal was made 
to arms. The long struggle on other fields, and in dif- 
ferent parts of the country, she sustained with men and 
means in a cheerful spirit ; and when peace came, her 
people, and especially her mechanics, spoke with a reso- 
lution which could not be resisted, in behalf of the adop- 
tion of the Federal Constitution, which was the glorious 
consummation of the patriot's prayers, and the bright 
herald of the nation's prosperity. At the advent of the 
new government under Washington — the country saved 
by the valor of her sons, and the Union consolidated by 
the provisions of this immortal instrument — Boston again 
started on her onward course. Her representatives took 
a leading part in the National Councils, while her citi- 
zens at home embarked in new enterprises for the devel- 
opment of the commercial and industrial resources of 
the country. The keels of her merchant ships vexed 
the seas of every continent. Her capitalists made the 
streams of New England, as they descended to the 
ocean, work their passage as manufactories were planted 
on their murmuring courses. Her mechanics and arti- 
sans, invigorated by the new motives to labor which 
independence had secured, added new wealth to the 
community ; and her professional men of every class 
gave a fresh lustre to science, and dedicated their learn- 
ing to the advancement and elevation of mankind. In 
the history of the last half century, she has been in 
unison with the rapid progress and marvellous success 


of our common country. Her wealth and population 
have increased with a healthy and steady growth. 
Often reproached as the representative of Ideas in ad- 
vance of the public sentiment of the whole Union, she 
to-day is honored as never before, for her unflinching 
adherence to principle ; and the Republic itself will not 
part with her fame or the renown of her great men, so 
long as it holds a place in the front rank of the consti- 
tutional governments of the world. 

I must confess to you that, in the preparation for this 
occasion, among the multitude of subjects, I have found 
it difficult to so order my thoughts as to select the appro- 
priate topics for consideration. The primary cause 
which led our ancestors to this place was religion ; and 
it would be an interesting field of survey to trace the 
progress of religious thought and theological inquiry, — 
to see how, with the advance of years, the tenets of the 
older sects were liberalized and new churches planted 
and prospered, so that now, living in harmony, we have 
the representatives of all the denominations into which 
the Christian world is divided. Education was the stone 
upon which our fathers laid the foundation of their 
superstructure ; and this interest has been so prominent 
through our history, that the modern friends of free 
schools have sometimes considered it our special token 
of regard, and other communities have gladly followed 
in the intellectual paths which we have marked out for 
ourselves. I believe it is generally acknowledged, that 
there is no large city in the world where the people of 
every class are so well versed in the common rudiments 
of knowledge ; and certainly there is none, in comparison 


with the population, where; there are so many institutions 
devoted to the higher branches of scientific investigation, 
and to the encouragement of elegant literature and the 
fine arts. Institutions for charitable and philanthropic 
purposes have always been fostered, keeping pace with 
human wants and needs, so that hardly an "ill which 
flesh is heir to" is left neglected in the circle of our 
ministering agencies. 

The glorious success of our national arms in crushing 
the late rebellion and extirpating that foul blot on the 
nation's character, which has so long been our reproach, 
will have an important effect on our commercial and 
industrial relations. Channels of business heretofore 
obstructed, or undeveloped, will soon open to the spirit 
of adventure or enterprise. Holding fast on those 
methods and objects of traffic which have been a source 
of her worldly success, Boston is destined to expand still 
more in this direction; and that prosperity which is 
based upon a mutual interchange of the commodities of 
the earth with the handicraft of man, can be anticipated 
for our city with the liveliest feelings of hope and cheer. 
A modern teacher of political economy has a maxim, 
that, " to increase the wealth of a people, you add to 
then power to bless the world." We, therefore, may 
rejoice from the highest motives, at all the signs of an 
affluent city which appear, if we constantly bear in mind 
that our duties correspond with the privileges we enjoy. 

Another class of subjects pertinent to the occasion, 
if time would permit, would be a consideration of the 
various interests directly connected with the special pre- 
rogatives and duties of a municipal government. The 


topographical changes which have taken place in the 
town since its settlement, have been as marked as any in 
its history. Commencing on a peninsula of abont seven 
hundred acres, with its additional territory, mostly 
reclaimed from the sea, it is now not far from sixteen 
hundred acres ; while East Boston and South Boston, 
now single wards, have each an extent of surface suita- 
ble for habitations and business purposes larger than the 
original town. Some of the prominent hills in the City 
proper have been levelled, and its creeks have been 
filled up. Many of its ancient streets, following the line 
of the shore, or creeping at the base of its original 
heights, or suiting themselves to the diversities of the 
surface of the soil, have been straightened and widened ; 
and this is a work which must go on, to meet the new 
exigencies of a teeming and thriving population, — a 
prolific source of official business, and involving a large 
expenditure of the public money. Our harbor, naturally 
one of the most magnificent in the world, whose spacious 
and convenient waters were the very cause of the loca- 
tion of the town, has, through the ravages of the sea, 
been serioiisly impaired, and deserves the most careful 
management, especially in those schemes for the city's 
enlargement which an increasing commerce may require. 
When we consider the millions of people who are in the 
future to inhabit this continent, and are to form this ener 
getic and busy nation, and recollect that the good harbors 
on the Atlantic coast, which connect us with the old 
world, can be counted on one's fingers, Avhile this geo- 
graphical fact presages that Boston will always hold an 


important commercial position, yet it gives a now signifi- 
cance to this interest so vital to its prosperity. 

The sanitary condition of OUT city, always a matter of 
concern with our ancestors, as is seen in their early 
appointment of a hoard of health, becomes more and 
more a subject of municipal care as population increases. 
The liberal supply and proper distribution of water, the 
fire department, which protects our dwellings and ware- 
houses from the devouring- element, the police, who 
shield us from the designs and acts of wicked men, the 
institutions where the vicious are incarcerated, or the 
unfortunate or the insane find their homes, the finances 
of the city, the construction of sewers, the paving and 
lighting of streets, the markets, cemeteries, hospitals, 
public library and schools, all these and kindred subjects 
afford themes of thought and comment, and arc naturally 
forced upon our attention, as we sit together for the first 
time hi a new building to be devoted to their manage- 
ment. But your patience would weary, and my strength 
would fail, in the attempt to give them that elaborate 
consideration which their merits demand. 

As has already been stated, the first city government 
of Boston was inaugurated in 1822, at Faneuil Hall. 
Some of the municipal offices remained in that ancient 
edifice a number of years ; others were located in what 
was then called the County Court House, the building 
formerly on this spot, in which the meetings of the 
Common Council were held. On the two-hundredth anni- 
versary of the settlement of the town, September 17th, 
1830, the old State House having been remodelled for 
the purpose, the different branches of the government, 



which had previously been in separate buildings, took 
possession of it, and an address was delivered by 
the Mayor, Harrison Gray Otis. On the same day 
appropriate commemorative services, of a popular 
character, took place at the Old South Church, an 
address being delivered by Josiah Quincy, the second 
Mayor of Boston, and a poem by Charles Sprague. 
The city government remained in the old State Plouse 
about ten years, when another change took place, and 
it removed back to this point, bringing with it other 
additional departments of the public service. The 
edifice was formally dedicated as a City Hall, March 
18; 1841, by an address from Jonathan Chapman, then 
Mayor of the city. The corner-stone of the edifice in 
which we are now assembled was laid December 22, 
1862, — the anniversary of the landing of the Pilgrims 
at Plymouth, — with appropriate Masonic services and 
an address by the Mayor, Joseph M. Wightman. This 
is the first building, therefore, which has been built 
and specially designed for municipal purposes ; and 
the present government will have the satisfaction, 
before then term of office has expired, to see its 
administrative officers suitably established, with the 
best facilities for the accommodation of our citizens 
and the despatch of public business. We have no 
inspiring historical associations connected with this 
edifice, as had our predecessors, who occupied Faneuil 
Hall and the old State House ; but the vicinity reminds 
us of the early past, as we look into the ancient burial- 
ground by our side, and recollect that Johnson and 
Winthrop, the fathers of the town, have, for upwards 


of two centuries, been sleeping within its sacred 
enclosure ; and that not far distant rest the hones of 
Hancock and Adams, and other patriots of another 
historical period. Nor can we forget that, on the very 
spot where the statue of Franklin is located before 
our windows, he played as a Boston schoolboy ; and 
that within a stone's throw still stands the Old South 
Church, so redolent with the patriotic memories of 
other days. 

We, and our successors in office, arc to give this 
new building a name and character. May its sym- 
metry and beautiful proportions be emblematical of the 
purity of life and elevated principles of those who 
shall occupy these seats, fill the several departments of 
public service, and manage the municipal affairs of this 
city ! The past is secure. The general character of 
our government from the first has been a fitting repre- 
sentative of the reputation of our people. Few names 
upon our Municipal Register we could wish blotted 
from the roll , for no city has been more favored with 
faithful and devoted public servants. The most afflu- 
ent in fortune, the highest in social position and culture, 
have deemed it an honor to participate in the conduct 
of our civic affairs, and citizens who had distinguished 
themselves in some of the most exalted national posi- 
tions, have put on again the badge of office, and devoted 
their time and talents for the promotion of the city's 
welfare. We have seen in other large municipalities, 
paradoxical as it may appear, that those citizens who 
have the most at stake, and whose fortunes and happi- 
ness are dependent in a great measure upon good 


government, arc the very ones who take the least 
interest in their local affairs, and those who would have 
exerted the best influence, on account of then intel- 
lectual gifts or moral character, shrink, as from pollu- 
tion, from the discharge of those duties which they 
cannot neglect without detriment to the public weal. 
A municipality is formed to organize order, to afford 
protection to persons and property, and to secure the 
blessings of peace and prosperity to a community. 
These can only be accomplished by the active and 
zealous interest of the best men. They should occa- 
sionally take office themselves, when then services are 
needed; and they should always watch with a jealous 
care the tendencies of public measures and the motives 
of those who originate them. If Boston has acquired 
any reputation in the conduct of her internal affairs, 
it is because her people have so distinguished themselves 
in these matters ; and when it shall be otherwise, her 
glory will have departed, and she should give up the 
right of self-government, for she will no longer deserve 
the privilege. The pride which a Bostonian feels hi 
his city, whether he was born within its limits or has 
made it his home by adoption, is justified by its past 
history, its actual condition, and its future prospects. 
Our business men are not, as in some other localities, 
mere seekers of fortune, temporary sojourners until that 
object is accomplished ; but they are a part of the 
living community, identified with all its concerns, and 
looking forward to spending the evening of their days 
within its precincts, or within the influence of its cher- 
ished associations. Hence a public spirit is fostered, 


which pervades every class and condition, which inter- 
ests itself in every cause which will add to the good 
name and fame of the city, and which in the affluent is 
so often illustrated in the liberal endowments of our 
literary and charitable institutions. 

In ancient times cities were established, under a dif- 
ferent form of civilization, for mutual protection of the 
people, and were surrounded with walls and fortifica- 
tions as a defence against a common enemy. Now, 
business is their mother, and while it is the chief inter- 
est and the greatest element in their outward growth, 
they become the great centres of mischief unless there 
is in the inhabitants a love of religion and virtue, and 
a taste for those objects of nature and art which 
ennoble the mind and refine the character. I do not 
believe, with Jefferson, that "great cities are great 
sores," for I hold that municipalities were the first to 
be identified with the cause of popular liberty ; but we 
may accept the remark as a warning, and endeavor to 
make our city the great fountain from which shall 
spread those influences which shall be for the healing of 
the nation. 

In addition to the local associations connected with 
this day, it is well to remember that it is also the anni- 
versary of the adoption of the Constitution of the 
United States. Sharing with the whole country in the 
blessings of the Union, no city has been more loyal 
than Boston, or has exhibited better proofs of its devo- 
tion to the National Government. The late infamous 
attempt to destroy the integrity of the Republic at once 
aroused her patriotism, and she proved, through the 


_ and protr.. - gg] nat the 

. burning on her altars. 

:ae field of battle, or stood upon 

[ ship-. : 

hands for the common defence, while her i. _ - 

lent their min> _ - of the 

wounded and dying in the hospifc remaining at 

_ beautiful cc". -._.". 

gracefully with the atmosphere which surrounds our 
habitations, now floats over a reunited courr i S& eam- 
firee air as the representatiTe of 


- - 

- - 

-* .- " 

"- : 

itors 01 

: foreign foes. 


Qdemen of the 

- - - 

.- - 

— *j 11 

prosaic, but the 



dedicate these walls to the cause of ^ r ood order aud good 
government ; to a watchful care of the morals of the 
community ; to a zealous stewardship of all it.- public 
inter sts ! Lei th< : ■• spirit of party and partisan- 

ship stop at the threshold and seek other theatres for 
the display of their intrigues ! Let official power be 
considered a sacred trust to be exercised by the m 
worthy citizens, — the j ssessor himself the bright 
exemplar and representative of the highest standard of 
public virtue ! Let wholesome laws and wise ordi- 
nances advance the material prosperity of our beloved 
city, and the personal welfare of all its inhabitants ! 
And with a filial obedience to the commands of the 
Great Ruler of the Universe, in whose hands are the 
destinies of communities as well as individuals, may 
the prayer of the people be ever that on the city seal : 

"Stent patoibus sit I hits nobis." 

A- God was with our Fath s, so may He be wit':. 




The City Hall faces School Street, with a large 
and beautiful space in front, through the centre of 
which is a broad avenue, paved with North River 
flagging, leading to the principal entrance of the 

On the left, as you ascend from School street, in the 
centre of the grass-plot, stands the statue of Franklin, with 
a gravel walk surrounding the base, for the inspection of 
the statue and the bronze bas-reliefs in the pedestal, 
which represent some of the principal events in the life 
of that great philosopher. The space on the opposite 
side of the avenue, as yet, remains unoccupied, and 
presents only a beautiful bed of green. 

The distance from which the edifice can be viewed is 
too limited to give the most favorable impression of its 
harmonious proportions and outline ; but even under 
this disadvantage it presents a grand and imposing 
appearance. European travellers, and persons from 
other cities of the United States, unite in the opinion 
that nowhere else on this continent can a municipal 
building be found of such elegance, and so well adapted 
for its designed use. 

The fence in front of the building corresponds avcII 
with the dignified architecture of the edifice. It is 


constructed of iron, supported by massive granite posts. 
Two central posts arc fifteen feet in height, and the 
middle block in each weighs nine tons. These posts 
are pierced vertically for the introduction of gas-pipes 
to the lamps which surmount them. Between these 
posts is placed an ornamental gate of unique design, 
and at each side three guard posts are erected. 

The face of the entire principal front of the building, 
and that of the west side, toward the cemetery, are of 
white granite, from the celebrated quarries of Concord, 
New Hampshire. 

The basement on all sides, together with the trim- 
mings of the rear and of the east side, upon Court 
Avenue, are of the same handsome material ; while the 
ashlar or face of these two latter facades is of the 
stone from the old City Hall, which occupied a portion 
of the site on which the present edifice stands. 

The exterior walls arc backed with brick, and are 
vaulted between the lacing and brick. With very few 
exceptions all the interior partitions are of brick, many 
of them containing air spaces which serve for the ven- 
tilation of the principal apartments. 

The basement, first, second and third stories, are 
wholly fire-proof, their floors being composed of brick 
arches laid in cement, supported by iron beams. The 
staircase halls throughout every story arc constructed in 
a similar manner, and with the stairs, which are of iron, 
are fire-proof. 

The floors of the fourth, fifth and attic stories, are of 
the best burnetized timber construction. The roof is 
also of wood, covered with copper and slate. 


The interior finish of the first or principal story of 
the building is in butternut. That of all the other 
stories is of pine, with the exeeption of counters, furni- 
ture, water-closet finish, etc., which are of oak, walnut, 
chestnut and butternut. 

The grand entrance is from School Street into the 
hrst-story hall, which is paved with squares of black 
and white marble ; and, as the visitor enters, he beholds 
the magnificent staircases, which are, perhaps, the most 
striking and effective feature of the interior. The con- 
struction of the risers and treads and outside stringer is 
of iron ; the ornamental moulded face stringers, newels, 
rail and balusters, being of solid oak. The continuous 
platform, which forms the landing in each story, is carried 
on eight oak columns, covering an iron column within, 
the columns standing in pairs, fluted, and having rich 
Roman Ionic capitals carrying entablatures. The stairs 
diverge from the centre of the hall, opposite the main 
corridor in the first story, after rising ten steps, 
in two separate flights, to the right and left, and are 
continued thus, in a double flight, to the fifth story. 
Standing as they do, in a clear, unobstructed space of 
twenty-eight by seventy-two feet, and lighted above by 
five elaborately coffered and panelled skylight openings 
in the ceiling of the fifth story, at the height of ninety 
feet from the lower floor, the effect of these staircases is 
extremely spacious and imposing, and they are probably 
not equalled, cither for dimensions or superiority of 
design and finish, by any in the country. 

The corridor, leading from the School-street entrance 
to the staircase hall, is fourteen feet five inches in width. 



In (lie wall, back of the first landing-, and facing the ves- 
tibule, is a tablet of exquisite workmanship, composed 
of veined Italian Sienna, and white statuary marble, upon 
which is placed the following inscription : 

Corner-stone Laid Dec. SS, 1SGJ2 

J. fH. EffifflStuwn, ifHaiior. 

.Dedicated September 17th., 1865. 

ff. OT. JLfncoln, Jr., fHniior. 

G. J, F. Bryant and A, Gilman, Architects. 

The original Report of the Committee of 1862 fur- 
nishes a full and particular description of the dimen- 
sions, arrangement, and intended uses of the building. 
Several changes hi the distribution of the apartments 
having been made, however, during the progress of the 
works, the following account will serve to convey an 
idea of their nature and extent. 

The sub-cellar of the building is used for a heating 
apparatus for the whole structure, and for the storage of 
fuel. The basement story is twelve feet in height in 
the clear, and has two commodious entrances on Court 
Square. In this story are two rooms for the Directors 
of Public Institutions and their clerks (contiguous to 
which is a spacious room for the reception of indigent 
persons) ; the office of the Scaler of Weights and 
Measures ; the Soldiers' Aid Committee ; the Superin- 
tendents of Hacks, Trucks and Pawnbrokers ; the 
City Physician (two apartments) ; the Janitor ; a repair 
shop for the fire alarm telegraph ; a room for storing 


tools used by workmen on water-works, and a large 
store-room. There are also two rooms for the Police 
Department, — one for searching parlies tinder arrest 
and for storing stolen property, the other containing 
two cells, connected with the private office of the Chief 
of Police, above, by a spiral staircase. Water-closets 
and urinals in this story are also provided in an 
apartment by themselves. 

In the first story arc the offices of the City Treasurer 
(two rooms), connecting with which is a large brick 
vault, enclosing burglar and fire proof safes, the whole 
of the most massive construction ; the offices of the 
Water Registrar and Water Board (three rooms) ; Over- 
seers of the Poor (two rooms) ; Chief of Police and 
Detectives (two rooms) ; Assessors (one), and Auditor 
(two rooms). These apartments arc all seventeen and 
a half feet in height, and afford ample space for the 
business to be transacted in them. 

In the second story is the Mayor and Aldermen's 
room, forty-four feet four inches by forty-four feet eight 
inches, and twenty-six feet four inches in height, extend- 
ing upward through the third story. In plan it is an 
unequal octagon, the four cardinal sides being consid- 
erably longer than the diagonal ones ; each side is filled 
by a richly moulded arch, supported by coupled Roman 
Ionic columns and pilasters, — the columns finely exe- 
cuted, in close imitation of Sienna marble. 

Hie ceiling is panelled to correspond with the outline 
of the walls, having rich centre pieces in the four prin- 
cipal panels, together with a large and very elaborate 
one in the centre. 

108 Tin: city hall. 

Adjoining, on the left, is a lobby, containing a ward- 
robe for each Alderman, and water-closets and urinals. 
On this floor, are the offices of the City Clerk (three 
rooms — in one of which is located a brick vault for 
receiving all the volumes of records), Superintendent 
and Committee on Public Buildings, (two rooms), 
Clerk of Committees (one), City Messenger (one), 
City Registrar and Directors of Mount Hope Cem- 
etery (two rooms), and one large committee room ; 
also, the Mayor's private office and the office of his 
clerk. The rooms in this story, with the exception of 
the Mayor and Aldermen's chamber, are thirteen feet in 

In the third story, which is twelve feet hi height, are 
two rooms for the Internal Health Department, two for 
the Superintendent of Streets, one for the Milk Inspec- 
tor, a private office for the Superintendent of Fire 
Alarms, two rooms in connection for the Superintendent 
of Sewers and Lands, two for the Chief Engineer of the 
Fire Department and Superintendent of Lamps, and 
three rooms for the City Engineer and his assistants. 

The Common Council Chamber is located hi the 
fourth story, directly over the Mayor and Aldermen's 
room. It is a square apartment, measuring forty-four 
feet eight inches on a side, and twenty-seven feet in 
height to the ceiling, which is octagonal. It has gal- 
leries on three sides, capable of seating two hundred 
and fifty persons. The galleries do not project into the 
apartment, but are constructed over the adjoining rooms 
and staircase gallery, and are entered from the fifth story. 
The walls of the attic and dome overhead are supported 


by a range of ten handsome composite columns, standing 
on the line of the front balustrade of the three gal- 

Tbe ceiling is coved and enriched with panels, orna- 
mental drops, and other appropriate details. 

The furniture in these two principal apartments, and 
throughout the building, was made specially for the 
places which the different articles were intended to 
occupy, from designs drawn under the direction of the 
Building Committee. In these designs beauty and 
elegance are combined with utility, and the fine effect 
of the different apartments is greatly enhanced by the 
blending of the variously colored woods and the appear- 
ance of harmony hi all the arrangements. Indeed, the 
general impression which the visitor receives from a 
survey of the interior of this beautiful edifice, is in no 
small degree heightened by the elegant workmanship 
and unity of design displayed in this department. 

Adjoining the Council Chamber is a dressing-room, 
fitted up with all the modern conveniences, connecting 
with which is a large conversation and committee room. 
There arc on this floor two rooms for the Clerk of the 
Council ; one for the Soldiers' Fund Association ; one 
for the Harbor Commissioners ; three for the School 
Committee, and two not yet appropriated. There is 
also a large room containing water-closets, urinals, wash- 
bowls, &c. 

In the fifth story, within the roof, is a room for storing 
the older records of the Assessors ; a store-room for the 
Auditor ; a sleeping room for the watchmen ; a large 
room for the storage of documents, and five rooms yet 



unassigncd, all elaborately fitted up for storing docu- 
ments until needed for more important city purposes. 

The attic, as has been remarked, is directly over the 
Common Council Chamber, and is surmounted by the 
dome. It contains the operating room of the Fire- 
Alarm Telegraph ; two sleeping rooms for the employes, 
who are obliged to spend the principal part of their 
time in this lofty out-look ; a library for the use of the 
operators during their leisure hours ; a wash-room, and 
a store-room. 

Going still higher, in the dome itself, is the battery 
room, thirteen feet five by forty-one feet nine inches, a 
repair shop, and a store-room. 

A reference to the plans of the several stories, form- 
ing part of this document, will convey to the reader a 
clear idea of the location, dimensions, and uses of the 
various apartments, herein generally enumerated. 

The dome is surmounted by a balcony, from which 
rises a flagstaff, whose height above the ground is two 
hundred feet. Four well-executed lions' heads look out 
fiercely from the corners of the balcony, and a magnifi- 
cent gilded eagle surmounts the centre of its front. 

It will be seen by the foregoing description that there 
is ample room in the new edifice to meet the prospective 
wants of the city for many years. After cutting off the 
outside rents, which have in some years been upwards 
of $10,000, aud for many years not less than $7,000, 
and providing every important office with two or three 
rooms, as above enumerated, with a large number of 
committee rooms, there still remain eight or ten rooms 
for which at present there is no assignment. 


We now proceed to give tlic names of the contractors, 
and others, who have contributed in a greater or less 
degree to the advancement of the work on the edifice. 

The granite was furnished by O. E. Sheldon, Thomas 
Hollis, George Penniman, and E. C. Sargent, and was 
quarried from the celebrated " Rattlesnake Ledge," at 
Concord, N. IT. Messrs. Wcntworth & Co. furnished 
half of the marble chimney pieces. The remainder of 
the marble work, including the beautiful tablet before 
spoken of, was supplied by Bowker & Torrcy. The 
North River tiles in the basement were supplied by 
Daniel C. Hutchinson, and the dressed North River 
flagging in front of the hall by Baldwin & Emerson. 
The iron floor-bearers were from the mills of the Phoenix 
Iron Co., of Philadelphia. The ornamental iron-work 
of the exterior and interior, (excepting fences and gates,) 
was supplied by J. W. Tuck & Co., and Messrs. Chase 
Brothers. All the other iron work, including fences 
and gates, was provided by George W. and F. Smith, 
with the exception of a portion of that for the stairs, 
which was supplied by Denio & Roberts. The glass 
was furnished by Tuttle & Garfield ; the gas piping by 
S. A. Stetson & Co.; the gas fixtures by S. A. Stetson & 
Co., Turner & Ware, Shreve, Stanwood & Co., and 
Bliss & Perkins ; the wooden floorings by John W. 
Latherbee ; the locks and door trimmings by Enoch 
Robinson & Co. ; the general hardware by Brooks & 
Darling ; the copper roofing by Charles S. Parker & 
Sons ; the copper gutters and conductors by Hicks & 
Badger ; and the lightning rods by William A. Orcutt. 
The bells and tubes are from the manufactory of S. W. 


Fuller. The window shades were furnished hy W. B. 
Ellis & Co., G. II. Cunningham & Co., and II. A. 
Turner & Co. The soapstonc fixtures were supplied hy 
George II. Foote and George W. Beach. The directo- 
ries and signs were executed by II. F. Moore. 

The contractors for the mason work were Messrs. 
Adams & Jacohs. Mr. Jonas Fitch contracted for the 
carjientcr work, which has been executed under his 
constant superintendence and that of Mr. J. L. Fuller, 
for many years in the employ of Mr. Fitch. Under 
their direction were constructed the grand staircases. 
The plaster and stucco work was done by Messrs. Titus 
& Ripley. The painting has been done under a contract 
by Haven & Dexter. The glazing was performed by 
Weston & Putnam, the plumbing by Hawthorne & 
Loudon and William Trainer, and the carved work on 
the dome by Mclntyre & Gleason. The scagliola 
columns, in the Mayor and Aldermen's chamber, are the 
work of Mr. Asa D. Morse. 

In regard to the furniture, it is sufficient to state that 
nearly all the fixed articles, such as counters, &c, were 
made and put up by Mr. Fitch. The movable furniture, 
except that for the Mayor and Aldermen's room, was 
furnished by Stephen Smith and Joseph L. Ross. The 
movable furniture in the Mayor and Aldermen's room, 
the president's rostrum and the clerk's desk in the coun- 
cil chamber, the chairs for both chambers, and the furni- 
ture for the Mayor's private room, were furnished under 
a contract with Messrs. Boyce Brothers and Squires, and 
are the work of Messrs. Touissaint & Co. 

The clocks in the various apartments are from the 


manufactory of E. Howard & Co., and II. L. Foss & 

The carpeting has hecn supplied hy Goldthwaite, 
Snow & Co., William E. Bright, Eowle & Co., Lovejoy 
and Co., John II. Pray & Co., Sweetser & Ahhott, and 
F. B. Wcntworth & Co. 

To Messrs. B. F. Campbell & Co. belongs the credit 
of heating the new structure upon the principle of steam 
at low pressure, combining the best experience of all the 
various principles heretofore brought to the public notice. 

The following gentlemen have served as sub-commit- 
tees in immediate charge of the erection of the new hall 
since its commencement: In 1862, Messrs. Francis 
Richards, Daniel Davics, and John W. Lcighton; 1863, 
Joseph F. Paul, Daniel Davies, and Nathaniel Adams ; 

1864, Messrs. Davies, Adams, and William Carpenter ; 

1865, Messrs. Davies, Adams, and Wm. W. Warren. 
Mr. Joel Wheeler, employed by the city to superin- 
tend the construction of the building, has given his 
personal attention to the work dady throughout, until 
the full completion of the building. Mr. James C. 
Tucker, Superintendent of Public Buildings, in Ids official 
position, has aided, in conjunction with Mr. Wheeler, in 
advancing the work from day to day. 

The excess of the cost of this building over the 
original estimates has been made a subject of remark in 
one or two of the public journals. But when we take 
into consideration the great additional value and security 
gained by the construction of fire-proof floors, and a sub- 
cellar for heating apparatus and fuel, as recommended 
in the report of the committee of March 30th, 1863, 



together with the other alterations and additions recom- 
mended at that time, we shall be led to believe that this 
additional cost has been wisely incurred. To the great 
and unprecedented advance which took place in the 
price both of labor and materials during the progress 
of the building, in consequence of the war, must be 
referred a large, if not the greater part of the increase 
of cost on the books of the City Treasurer. Some 
of the contracts for iron, lead, copper, paints, glass, 
etc., etc., were necessarily made at a time when gold 
was selling from 260 to 280 in all our markets ; — 
add this unexpected advance in prices to the cost 
of furniture, fences, and grading and laying out of 
grounds, and it will be found, on a fair comparison, 
that the cost of the building proper would hardly have 
exceeded the estimates of 1S62, if taken at the then 
price of gold, and on the scale of values of materials 
and labor then existing. 

On the contrary, it is believed to be demonstrable 
that, in view of the conjunction of the causes already 
enumerated, this building has, in fact, been built with 
the utmost economy, and with a. very close adherence to 
the original intentions of the committee who reported, 
and of the city government, who authorized its erec- 
tion. It would be easy to show this hi detail, were 
it necessary or proper to enter into an exact calculation, 
giving the items, the dates of contracting, and the price 
of gold at the time such contracts were made, as com- 
pared with the price ruling in the months of July and 
August, 1862. Reducing the cost to a gold standard, — 
scarcely departed from, it will be remembered, at the 



date of the estimates alluded to, — and adding the extra 
cost and real value of the iron fire-proof construction and 
sub-cellar, — deliberately adopted upon the recommen- 
dation of the committee, as before mentioned, together 
with other important alterations and additions, — and it 
will be found that scarcely any discrepancy exists be- 
tween the original expectations of the expense, and the 
actual footing up of all the items fairly to be included in 
the cost of the building itself. It was, of course, always 
to be understood, that such items as grading, fencing, 
and furnishing were not to be included in an estimate of 
mechanical work required in erecting the structure. 


Plans, Designs and Models .... 
Removing Old Building, Excavating, Carting and 

Grading Grounds ...... 

Dressed Stone and cutting the same 

Mason Work, including setting the dressed stone 

Iron Beams, Stairs, Fence, and Gates 

Lumber, Carting and Burnctizing 

Carpenter's Work, which includes all fixtures for 

Closets, Counters, &c. ..... 

Plastering and Stucco Work, which includes the 

Scagliola Columns ..... 

Heating Apparatus ...... 

Painting and Glazing ..... 

Marble and Soapstone Work, Tiling, &c. . 
Slating, Coppering and Copper Gutters . 
Window Glass ...... 

Plumbing ....... 

Amount carried forward, .... 

$11,177 00 

6,243 85 

96,197 10 

54,358 47 

65,237 30 

4,555 24 

100,431 37 

15,592 94 

22,525 36 

13,350 31 

9,720 51 

13,798 26 

7,532 68 

5,262 10 

$425,982 55 



Amount brouglit forward, ..... $425,982 55 

Carving 1,939 50 

Hard Ware and Window Weights .... 4292 10 

Gas Pipes and Fixtures ...... 9 195 C7 

Lightning Conductors, Speaking Tubes and Bells . 602 20 

Superintendent of Construction .... 3,040 00 

Fuel and Gas 4 ; 040 90 

Furniture and Carpets . . . . . .51 829 75 

Moving and Removing Franklin Statue, laying Cor- 
ner-Stone, and incidental expenses of Committee . 3,G59 75 


$505,191 42 


Facing King's Chapel Burial Ground 
24 ft to I Inch. 

I I! ltuN.n.l s !>tl> Boston 




■3UB EA5EM 1 " 






























1 " 



2 N „ D 5T0RY 






















5. LlgRARY, 



J H Biiiford .lith . 


TJirouoli. 3t<m case Hall . 






B- CELLAR . - < 



















G.J.F Bryant, ts 

& A.Gilman 

J.H Bufford .litli Boslon, 


II 0" 



J HUufford.Hosl, 



l*-/3' " 

Plan of Basement 

G. J.F Bryant, j arch ts 
& A.Gilman, 

J HBufford.lith. Boston, 


Plan o» First Story 

Scale 24fl.tolJnch 

G.J.Ffty»nt, ts 

fc A.dilmnn, 

J HBufford. Boston, 


.1 ItUulfur.llnJ, 

Plan of third story. 

G.J.F.Bryant ) 
a a nn J. ARCH 

JHBuffoid Jtth. 





AtA.Gihnaii. > 


Scale 24-ft to I in 

Scale 24-fl to I in. 





Mafiachufetts Hiftorical Society, 

IN 1657 AND 171 1. 

Power Conferred by the Committee for the Town Iloufe — 1657. 

Wee whofe names are vnder wrighten having full power 
given vs by the Town of Bofton to Agree with workmen, 
& in their behalfe to Engadge the Town, In the Payment 
of any fum or fums for the building Ereding & Compleat- 
ing of A houfe for the Town both for the forme & dimen- 
tions &c. according as we fliall Judge meet, They the f d 
Towne having Engadged themfelves to own & ftand by 
vs and performe what promifes Covenants or Engadgm ,s 
wee mould make in order to the accompliihing of the 
premifes, And to facilitate the f d worke we the f d fub- 
fcribed doe make choyce of M Edward Hutchinfon & 
John Hull in o behalfe to Agree & Compound with 
workmen & Engadge paym! in everie refped for the f d 
worke & we doe hereby oblidge o r felves to ftand by, own, 
& performe what the f d M r Ed : Hutchinfon & Jn Hull 


foe deputed Audi doe or Engadge themfelves in as iff it 
was the perfonall ad of everie one off vs & heervnto we 
fubfcribe o r hands, by this binding o' felves likewife to 
own what the f" prtyes have allridy done in the f d worke 
figned this 31 of the 6 th month 1657. 

c Towne/men 


Tno : Marshall 
Samuel Cobb 
William Paddy 
Josh : Scottow 
Jer : Howchin. 


Boston Auguft i. 1657. 

Wee whofe names are vnder wrighten Being chofen by 
& in behalfe of the Town of Bolton, to bargain & Con- 
trad with fome able workemen about A houfe for the 
Town, we have Bargained & Contraded, & by thefe pre- 
fents doe bargain & Covenant with Thomas Joy and 
Bartholomew Bemad of Bolton ; & the f d Thomas Joy & 
Bartli Bernad, are heerby bound & doe oblidge themfelves 
vnto the f d Town of Bolton (& in vn[to] In their behalfe) 
that they will Prepare & Ered, a very fubltantiall and 
Comely building In the place Appointed by the f d Town ; 
The dimensions of w ch Edifice (hall be fixty fix foot in 
Length, and thirty fix foot in Breadth from out fide to 
out fide, fet vpon twenty one Fillers of full ten foot high 
between Pedeltall & Capital!, & well brafed all four 
waies, placed vpon foundation of ftone in the bottome. 
The wholl Building to Jetty over three foot without the 


Pillers everie way: The height of the i' d Houfe to be ten 
foot betwixt Joynts above the Pillers, and a halfe itorie 
above that, with three gable Endes over it vpon each fide : 
A walke vpon the Top fourteen or 15 foote wide with two 
Turrets, & turnd Balafters and railes, round about the 
walke according to A modcll or draught Prefented to vs, 
by the f d Tho : Joy, & Barth : Bernad. The f' 1 Tho : Joy 
& Barth : Bernad Likewife, finding all things neciiarie and 
meet for the f d Building, viz : Timber in in everie refpeft 
& of everie fort, fubllantiall & meet according to Propor- 
tion & Art, Plank for the tides & ends three Inch thick,* 
well groved one into another, and into the timbers allfo an 
Inch and halfe ; well plained and fmoothed one Both 
fides, two Inch plank for the lower floor, and full Inch 
for the vpper floor, Both fmoothed, and vpon the walk 
duble boarded and well groved ; the RoofF well boarded 
& fliingled, with gutters fufBciently made. 

Bringing all to the Place, Erecting, finifliing & Com- 
pleating the whole Edifice viz The Frame, foundations, 
Floores, ihiires (viz Two pair halfe paced liaires ct turnd 
ftaires vp into the walke) doores, window Cafes & Cafe- 
ments, mantle peeces, Inclofures Pertitionsf &c The wholl 
Edifice to be Ereded, by the thirty daye of the fourth 
month called June next enfuing the date hecroff; and 
Covered and fliingled within fix weekes after that. The 
Town finding all the Iron worke, as nailes hookes hinges 
&c. glafs with glafing and Lead for the Gutters mafonrie 
worke as the chimnies, foundation of the Pillers with Hone 

* Only we alow of Two Inch plank for the fuls & ends above the Plates & beames. 
f There is to be both Uoomes from the chimnies clofed one both fides and one Crofs 
partition in one of the Koomes; befide the ftair Cafe. 


brick & Lime belonging to the fame the affo r f d Tho : & 
Barth: all the other worke as affor 1 ? The Town finding 
help at the rayfing. 

In confideration of the premifes we doe heerby oblklge 
ourfelves (according to order & in behalfe of the f d Town 
of Bolton afforf' 1 ) To give & Affigne over vnto the f' 1 
Tho: Joy & Barthol : Bernad, or to either of them or their 
affignes the three Hund : Pounds w ch is that Part of the 
Legacy of Cap' Rob' Keyne (deceafed) defigned & be- 
queathed vnto the f' d Town in his Laft will for ther vfe, 
and alfo one hund. Pound more we heerbv obi idee o r 
felves to Pay or Caufe to be paied vnto the f d Thomas & 
Bartholomew or their Affignes In good Englifh goods at 
prife Currant, and likewife to doe our vttmost that one fiffty 
pound of this above mentioned paym! (viz out of the thre 
Hun 1 !) may be made in mony for the more lively cavfing 
an end of the affo r f d worke. 

The Time of w ch Payment iliall be as followeth viz: 
one Hund. Pound at the Bringing of the Timber to the 
Place A feccond Hund: at the rayfing A third Hund: 
at the Inclofure & Covering A fourth at the finifhing and 
Compleating vnto all thefe premifes abovef d we doe heerby 
Joyntly & feveraly mutualy & Interchangeably bind o r 
felves by o r hands & feales this firft of Auguft, 1657. 

We doe alfo engadge that the three Hund : pound in 
the Legacy abovef 1 ' fhall be made good vnto the f d work- 
men Thomas & Bartholomew. 

Witnefes heer vnto 

Joseph Newgate Edward Hutchinson [seal.] 

James Browne John Hull, [seal] 

Henry Powning 


MARCH io T " 1711-12. 

Whereas the Rents referved to the Town of Bofton for 
feveral fpare Rooms in, under, and Adjoyning to the late 
Town Houfe befide all rooms made ufe of there for Pub- 
lick Occafions, did according to the Rates they were lett, 
or might have been Lett at amount to Eighty pounds P r 

And the Great and Gen" Court or Affembly of this 
Province haveing lately directed, That there be a Houfe 
built in or neer the place where the Old Town Houfe 
lfood, for Publick meetings on Civill Occasions, For 
Province County and Town, Viz' For the Meeting of the 
Gen" Affembly, The holding of Councills and Courts of 
Juftice and Town Meetings, the Charge thereof to be born 
the One halfe by the Province, the Other halfe by the 
Town of Bofton and County ot Suffolk in Equall propor- 
tion, unto which propofal the Inhabitants of Bofton have 
Voted their Concurrance. 

And fince there is profpect of as great if not greater 
improvem 13 and advantage by fuch fpare room in the f d 
new building now to be Ereded, it may not be unfeafona- 
ble for the Inhabitants of this Town now to make Sutable 
provifion to iecure that priviledge and benefitt to them 
felves and their iucceffors. 

And altho other Arguments might be of weight for 
their being fo benefitted, Yet rather then forego and looic 
the fame, May it not be advifeable for them to agree upon 
bearing fome Additional Charge in y e f d building as an 
Equivalent, That fo they may be thereby Effectually Inti- 


tulled to the benefit and improvement of all fuch rooms 
and fpaices in under and adjoyning to the f d New building 
which lliall be conveniently capable of being inclofed and 
Improved for diltinct ufes, and otherwife not needfull to 
be made ufe of for thofe afore mentioned Intentions pro- 
pofed by the Gen" Court, and thereby to Leflen the Charge 
of the Province, Town and County in their refpective 
proportions as aforefaid. The which additionall Charge, 
together with the Charge of Inclofeing and fitting of (hops 
&c. there, may (if the Town fees meet) to very good 
advantage be defrayd out of that their money w ch is the 
Effeds of Lands fold and in Equity ought to be fo layd 
out as to raife and perpetuate an income to the Town. 

And in cafe futable Application be made to the Gen" 
Court on the behalfe of this Town relating to the premi- 
fies, under the confideration of their Exceffive crowing 
Charge & Expences, & their fo great a lofs by the Late Fire, 
& that the Late Town-House w ch was built at the Charge 
of y e Inhabitants of this Town was for neer fifty years pair, 
made ufe of for all Publick Occafions w ,h out any other 
Charge to the Public then that for fome of the Later years 
they have born part of y° Charge of y e Repaires. 

And that the Town of Bofton being the true and proper 
Owners of all that Land on w ch the laid New building is 
now to be ereded. It is prefumed that they will readily 
agree unto fo juft and reafonable a propofal. 

Propofed By Jofeph Prout Read at y e begining of y e 
Town meeting y e 10 th of March 1711-12. 


HOUSE— 1711. 

1711 Octo. Committee appointed by the Gen 1 Court viz 
Eilfha Hutchinfon Samuel Sevvall Nathan 1 Payn & 
Thomas Noyes Efq' s of the Council, Samuel Applcton, 
Jofiah Chapin, John Clark & James Warren Efq rs Maj r 
Thomas Fitch, Cap' Simon Davis and Capt! Samuel Phipps 
of the Houfe of Reprefentatives. 

The Above Committee Advife that there be a houfe 
built in or near the place where the old Town houfe flood 
for the ufes mentioned in the Memorial as convenient as 
may be without incomoding the ftreet the Breadth not to 
Exceed thirty fix feet the Length fo as to be Convenient 
for the Ends mentioned in the Addreffe. That a Com- 
mittee be Appointed by this Court to take Care for the 
Building as fpeedily & prudently as may be, The Charge 
thereof to be born the one half by the Province the other 
halfe bv the Town of Bolton & County of Suffolk in 
Equal proportion. 

By ord r of the Major part of the Committee, 

Elisha Hutchinson. 

November 10 1711 Read and Accepted And a Com- 
mittee Railed and Directed to Advife with his Excellency 
and fuch fkilful gent" as they may think fit to be Confulted 
with about the Model of the Houfe. 

Copy of the Minutes. 

Is A Addington Secry. 

Note. That the Houfe is for Publick Meetings, on Civil Occafions ; for the Province, 
County & Town, viz* for the Meeting of the General Al'fembly The Holding of Councils, 
and Courts of Juftice and Town meeting. 





Whearas thear is giuen a confiderabl fume by Capt Kayne 
towars the Bulding of a towne houfe w ch fume will not ataine 
the Bulding w ch he mentioneth in his will, now confidering the 
vfefullnes of fuch a ftructure we whofe names are vnder written, 
doe ingag or felues or heyres executors for to giue towards 
the abou fd hous and alfoe a condit in the market place the 
severall sumes vnder written.* 

£ s 

Jo : Endecott . . . . 2 — 10 — 00 
pd Ri Bellingham in Country pay 10 — 00 — 00 pd 17. 

pd Edward Tynge in Corne 10 — 00 — • o pd 

pd John Euered in goods and 

corne .... 010=00 — 00 pd 
pd 46 s Peter Olliuer in goods , and 

pro virions . • . 10=00 — 00 

John 8 Barrett : in goods : or 

corne .... 03 — 00—00 d. 29 Aug. 1658 
pd James Olliuer provided there 
be a Cundit withall in goods 
and provifions eqelly . 12 — o — 00 pd 

* This was written between 23 March, 165G, and 29 August, 1G5S. 

Subsequent comparison allows me to say that it was written in 1G5G. — /■'. 



Will Paine in goods and provifions 
pel Richard Parker in goods and provifions . 
pd Nathaniel] Williams in goods 
pd Sarah Parker in provifions 
pd Henry Powning in goods 
pd John Cogan in Corne . . . > 

.... five pounds . . . . J 

paid Theodore Atkinfon will give in hats . 
'I 'ho Howkings ..... 

paid John Hull In Englifii goods five 1 " 
pd Thomas Clarke in provifion or goods 
pd Robt Turner ...... 

paid Richard Cooke in provifions . 

pd Robert Swift 

paid. Samuel Hutchinfon in wheat 
paid Jofh Scottow in pvifion or goods 
pd Will™ Hudfon will : pay in bricks lyeme 
pd bords .... or timber the fome of 

Hezekiah Uflier : will pay 2 In Englifh 
Goods or equivolent, twentye : poundes, 
prouifo : y' y" market houfe bee Errecled 
in y° markett place - & A cunditt. 
W™ Dauis will pay in goods & corne Fif- 
teene pounds prouided y° market-houfe 
bee erected in y° markett place & a coun- 
duitt alfo raifed & Finifhed . 
pd Thomas Buttolphe ..... 

paid James Penn ...... 

paid Jacob Sheafe in provifion & goods . 
paid Tho : Lake £ In Englifh-goods & 1 In pro- 
vifiions ....... 

pd Ifaak Waker in Englifh goods or provifions 
paid John Sanderline $£ .... 

. pd Robt : Patefhall, in planke, or boards 
paid Thomas Matfon ..... 

paid John Williams ...... 

paid Thomas Edfell ..... 

15 . 00 . 00 


-00 — 00 pd 


—00 — 00 pd 


-00 — 00 pd 


—00 — 00 pd 


—00 — 00 pd 


: 00 : 00 pd 




—00 — 00 pd 

/-in nn iirl 



— — pd 


10 00 pd 


.10 00 pd 


. 00 — 00 pd 


: 00 — 00 pd 






20=00=00 pd 















: 00 








: 00 ; 



- 0- 










paid Thomas I High ...... 

oo — 15 00 

paid Richard Gridley 

02 — 00 — 

paid John Button ...... 

04 — 00 — 

Benjamin Negus 

James Eueritt in Flower. . . . . 

01 — 00 — 00 

Robt Batterly 

00 — 15 — 00 

paid John Coney 

00 — 15 — 00 

paid Samuell Mattocke 

00 — 7 — 00 

paid Rich* Stanes ...... 

00 — 10 — 00 

paid Rowland Story in Lewtenant Cooks hand 

01 : 00 : 00 

paid Ri Wayte ....... 

02 — 00 — 00 

paid Phillip VVhorton ..... 

02 — 00 — 00 

paid Auguften Clement ..... 

1 — — 

paid Richard Woodde in provifion 

01 — — 

paid John Phillips ..... 

03— 0— 

paid Tho Emons ...... 

1 — — 

paid Thomas Littell thre dayes worke . 

00 — 10 — 

Humphrey Bradfhaw thre dayes worke 

00 — 10 — 

Jofeph Bonde ten fhilings by Samell Lemist 

00 — 10 — 

George Brome a bulhel wheate 

00 — 04 — 

paid William Paddy ...... 

1 2 — — 

paid Henry Kemble ..... 

00 — 10 — 

paid Thomas Makepeace ..... 

01 — 00 . 

paid Joihua Hewes ..... 

00 — 10 — ■ 

Ffrances Smith ..... 

00 . 10 — 00 

paid Francis Doufe ..... 

00 — 09 — 

paid John Pierce ...... 

S4 — 00 — 

paid Simon Eire ...... 

1 . 10 . 

paid Comfort Starr ...... 

01 — 00 — 00 

paid Henry Phillips ..... 

05 — 00 — 00 

paid Henry Shrimpton Corne wood . 

10 — 00 — 00 

paid John Lowel 

03 — 00 00 

paid George Munioy three pounds 

03 — 00 — 00 

paid Jno. Joylifife ...... 

03 . 00 . 00 

paid Amos Richardfon 

02 : 00 : 00 

pd Edmond Grenleff ..... 

— 10 — 

pd Edward Porter 

1 — — 



paid Nicholas Phillips 

10 — 

pil Thomas Harwood ..... 

1 — 00 — 

paid Thomas Brattle .' . 

5— 0— 

paid Thomas Baker in Iron workes . 

01 — 00 — 

paid John Biggs in Shingle or worke 

002 — 00 — 00 

paid Jo : Marlhall in fhoes .... 

01 — — 

paid Henry Alline 

01 — 00 — 00 

paid Hugh Drury ...... 

01 — 00 

paid John Cohens ..... 

1 — — 

paid Thomas Scotto ..... 

1 — — 

paid Nathanell Thorn ..... 

— 10 — 

paid John Pears ...... 

1 — 0— 

paid William Reade ..... 

00 — 10 — 00 

paid Will. Tay 

00 — 10 — 00 

paid Jo? Blacklach ..... 

01 — 00 — 00 

paid John Clough ...... 

00 — 10 — 00 

paid Sam" Davice ..... 

00 — 05 — 00 

paid Samuell Cole ...... 

02 — 00 — 00 

paid Chriftopher Gibfon .... 

02 — 00 — 00 

paid Robert Nanney ...... 

02 — 00 — 00 

paid Henry Bridgham ..... 

10 — 00 — 00 

paid Thomas Waker ...... 

12 — 10 — 00 

paid Nathanell Raynolls .... 

01 — 00 00 

John Hawkines tobaco .... 

OI — 00 — 00 

paid Arthur Maffon 

00 — 10 — 00 

paid Ann Carter ios 

00 — 10 . 00 

paid James Dauis by Tho : Joy 6s & 4s more 

00 — 10 — 00 

paid Daniel Turill ..... 

01 — 00 — 00 

paid Thomas Fich ...... 

00 — 10 — 00 

paid Edmund Jacklin in glafs or worke if I be in 

the con try when the houfe is to be glafled 

01 — oo:=oo 

paid AVilliam Gibfon ..... 

00 — 05 — 00 

paid Jeremy Caftine ..... 

01 — 00 — 00 

paid Edmund Jackfon by Thomas Fay 

01 — 00 — 00 

Miells Towne in lether .... 

00 — 5 s — 00 

pd William Englifh — in fhoes 

02 — 00 — 00 

paid Jofeph Howe Twenty Shillings 

01 — — 



paid Samuel Norclen in (hoes .... 

pel ios Robert Nafh in worke .... 

paid Mathew Barnes — paid i — 9 — 3 

paid Thomas Dewer ..... 

paid William Corfer ...... 

paid Bartholomew Cheever 30 f . 

Henery Meffengcr — paid .... 

Will. Colburn in or provifion paid 

1 6s . 
paid Edward Goodwin ..... 

pd James Johnfon in his Comodityes . 
pd 5s John Newgat promife to give five pound & 

in the preveledg of our .... 

Thomas Bumfted of Bofton promife . 
paid Natha : Duncan ..... 

paid Peter Duncan ...... 

paid John AVifwall ..... 

paid Jofeph Wife ...... 


-10 — 



-10 — 



-10 — 



-00 — 



-10 — 



-10 — 



-10 — 


3 • 



















2- — 



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